ASRock Releases a Dual Xeon Double-Sided Hybrid Storage Server
This week at CeBIT 2013 ASRock released a dual Intel Xeon storage server with double-sided hybrid storage. ASRock is known for making high-quality consumer motherboards as well as higher-end workstation motherboards. In fact, we previewed the ASRock X79 Extreme11 several months ago. This week at CeBIT 2013 ASRock is launching its first 2U dual Intel Xeon E5-2600 series motherboard and server platform. As desktop shipments are set to decline for the industry again in 2013, manufacturers such as ASRock are gearing up to take on the lucrative server market with new offerings.
The New ASRock Dual Xeon Storage Server
Powering the new server is the ASRock EP2C602-2T2OS6/D16 with dual Intel Xeon E5-2600 sockets, Intel X540 10 gigabit LAN and a LSI SAS2308 controller. That combination draws upon some of today’s top of the line embedded components making this a fairly high-end offering.
ASRock has a somewhat unique configuration in that it houses 6x 2.5″ storage bays in the rear of the chassis as well as 12x 3.5″ storage bays in the front of the chassis. The backplane for the 12x 3.5″ storage bays has a LSI SAS 2×20 SAS expander so it appears as though ASRock is driving most if not all of the storage through the LSI SAS2308 SAS/ SATA controller. The configuration also allows a user to have the 3.5″ disks handle mass storage while the SSDs can be used for hypervisor installations or cache drives for rotating storage.
One other area where ASRock appears to be innovating is in terms of the side-by-side CPU layout with the low profile PCI Express card slots lining up in the middle of the chassis. From what we can see there are a total of eight DIMM slots per Intel Xeon E5-2600 series LGA2011 socket for a total of 16 DIMM slots in the server.
Overall, the double-sided hybrid storage server idea by ASRock is fairly unique. The selection of high-end components is generally an indicator that the system is targeted at higher-end applications. Hopefully we will get more information on ASRock’s new server platform and plans in the near future. Stay tuned.