June 29, 2020

New ARM-based server for Bamboo

Bamboo Systems, formerly known as Kaleao, announced recently during the IT Press Tour its new ARM-based server, the model B1000N. Founded in 2015, the company has raised $4.5M in a Seed round.

The new system introduces a new architecture named PANDA for Parallel Arm Node Designed Architecture. PANDA combines multiple benefits for modern software needs and low energy consumption.

Microservices applications have initiated this new design associated with the trend for high density of components.

Bamboo targets specific demanding use cases around AI/ML, analytics, edge computing and Kubernetes environments.

B1000N is a 1U server with 1 or 2 blades and each blade embed 4 compute nodes plus a non-blocking embedded L3 switch exposing dual 40Gb QSFP ports. Usually a node operates Linux meaning 1U you can have 8 Linux servers, perfect density and computing power for lots of applications. But the strategy of Bamboo is multi-servers so a multiple of 8 servers finally.

In 4U, you obtain the power of 48 servers reducing drastically energy and footprint therefore TCO. A node uses NXP 2160A A72 Coretex 16 core processors so per blade it gives 64 cores and on 1U 2 blades server it means 128 cores. RAM is 64GB/node and 8TB PCIe/SSD/node so 64TB per 1U server. It's small for storage but perfect for edge computing.

ARM processors arrive at the right moment as a few key metrics such energy and parallel tasks to tackles big problems. The momentum has already started and shows 38.2% of increase for none x86 while x86 decreased 9.1% during the same Q1/2020 period.

Recently Apple also swapped Intel x86 to ARM CPU illustrating a real trend. Bamboo insists on the new metric introduced as the kilowatt-hours instead of frequency or number of cores for eon for instance.

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