Google Running Linux on IBM Power 9

Running Linux on IBM Power9 has multiple advantages over running Linux on an X/86 architecture. Amongst these advantages are speed, reliability and power savings. Rather than having your processing of business-critical data being help in queues awaiting processed, the Power9 chips design allows users to get more done per each clock cycle and in a fast and more efficient manner.

IBM utilizes Power9 EnergyScale. This will allow users to change the Energy Management Mode. This can enable a dynamic energy setting based upon the load of the system and not wasting energy that is not need in the form of processing power and reducing cooling requirements.

The new IBM Power9 servers provide up to 2 times the speed of their X/86 competition, based upon the same numbers of cores. Therefore, not only is performance improved, licensing cost is decreased due to a fewer number of CPUs being required to be licensed. This not only leads to better performance but does so at an overall cost savings in your software stack.

IBM POWER chips and X/86 chips can both support virtualization. However, IBM POWER systems have been designed with virtualization in mind from the very beginning and features a built-in hypervisor that operates with as little as a 2 percent loss in efficiency (as compared to running a workload directly on the hardware, without using a hypervisor). As a result, POWER chips are very efficient at virtualizing workloads.

X/86 chip manufacturers have added virtualization extensions to the X/86 architecture, but X/86 was not originally designed with virtualization in mind. If you want to virtualize a workload on top of an X/86 chip, you must use a third-party hypervisor, such as one of the ones offered by VMware, Hyper-V or KVM.

Although virtualization solutions for X/86-based computers have come a long way since their early days, it remains difficult for them to get close to the same level of performance efficiency within a virtual environment that the IBM POWER9 delivers.

IBM is not only committed to Linux but bought Red Hat Linux for a whopping 34Billion dollars. IBM wanted Red Hat for its development of what is the world’s largest portfolio of open source technology, its hybrid cloud platform and a vast open source developer community. Together, the two companies effectively become the world’s leading hybrid multi-cloud provider.

Who is using Power9 Processors at the ultimate level ? How about the worlds largest search engine. Google has found that it’s web search algorithms scale well with the IBM power9 processors. The largest advantage is in the way the number of threads per core that can be utilized. With the IBM Power9 using SMT4 and even SMT8 on their Enterprise class servers, the number of threads can be up to 4 times that of a comparable X/86 Systems. This leads to parallelism at the sub core level and increases performance with Googles code that utilizes this design.

When Compared to Intel’s Hyper-threading which utilizes 2 threads per core, IBM Power9 utilizes Simultaneous multi-threading which utilizes up to 8 threads per core. When properly configured and utilized at the application layer, this can give you up to 4 times the threads leading to much better improvement in scalable performance.

By utilizing SMT, IBM Power gets your data processed rather than waiting to be processed in the X/86 Hyper-threading queue. This is like having an 8-lane highway compared to a 2-lane highway. And in that 2-lane highway, your car is stuck on the on-ramp.

Google Running Linux on IBM Power 9

Linux on Power will run faster, cost less and can cut energy cost in your datacenter. By getting more of your data processed per clock cycle, running Linux on Power is a more solid platform over the X/86 alternative.