• Michael Gähwiler, Senior Bus. Development Mgr.

All-new IBM Power10 processor: More memory, more speed, more security


A few days ago, IBM officially launched the 10th generation of the very successful IBM Power CPU under the name Power10. The IBM Power10 processor offers numerous functions and features that will benefit cloud service providers and on-premise data centre operators, especially for large corporations or organisations. These include new and improved storage concepts as well as robust additional security features. This means that multi- and hybrid cloud infrastructures in particular can be better protected against attacks from inside and outside. Also important: Consumption of electricity is significantly lower at higher performances. To achieve this, the IBM Power10 processor offers interesting features.


After the previous models of the 8th and 9th Power generation, one can speak of a quantum leap with the new Power10:

  • Structure width: 7 nanometres (@ Power9 CPU 14 Nm)

  • Number of transistors: 18 billion (@ Power9 8 billion)

  • Maximum cores per processor: up to 30 (@Power9 up to 22)

  • Maximum memory per CPU: 4 terabytes

  • Number of threads per dual chip: 240 threads


Cross-CPU, high-speed memory connections

With the PowerAXON interface, which connects the existing processor cores with each other and at the same time can "network" the CPU with other chips, a significantly higher bandwidth can be achieved. IBM reckons with up to 1 terabyte per second. In addition, the interface supports various protocols, which allows numerous possible applications.

In addition, the PowerAXON interface masters so-called memory clustering. This means that each processor has access to the memory areas of other processors within the same as well as remote networks. Compared to other techniques, access times in the nanosecond range can be realised, which increases data access by a factor of 1000 compared to competing processors.


IBM calls the technology behind this "memory inception". As the term suggests, it is primarily intended to accelerate AI-based applications by building memory clusters that enable petabyte-sized memory structures. This is particularly useful for data-intensive machine learning methods. According to IBM, this can improve and accelerate machine learning.


4 terabytes of memory for each CPU

The IBM Power10 processor supports the so-called Open Memory Interface (OMI). This allows a maximum of 16 DDR5 memory modules to be managed per processor, resulting in a memory size of up to 4 terabytes - and that per CPU socket. According to IBM, this makes a data throughput of 410 gigabytes/second realistic. This will catapult data-intensive applications into new dimensions and enable numerous new application scenarios.


Transparent storage encryption

Also interesting are the new security functions that IBM has integrated into its Power10 processor. These include, for example, the transparent RAM encryption TME (Transparent Memory Encryption). This allows data located in non-volatile memory areas to be better protected. This should help make logical partitions and cloud containers even less vulnerable.


End-to-end encryption is used for this purpose, which better secures access to storage contents. In addition, the number of AES encryption units of the Power10 processor has been increased by a factor of 4. The result: the CPU can encrypt and decrypt data faster and is also better prepared for future cryptographic methods.


For more information, please contact WIRD

For more information on the new IBM Power10 processor and the available equipment, please contact WIRD at info@wirdgroup.com. WIRD Group is a IBM Platinum Business Partner for Switzerland and has additionally IBM Platinum Certifications for the IBM Power Platform, the IBM Z Mainframe Platform and the IBM Storage Solutions.

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