Inspur Systems NF5280M5 Review 2U Intel Xeon Scalable Server


Inspur Systems NF5280M5 CPU Performance

At STH, we have an extensive set of performance data from every major server CPU release. Running through our standard test suite generated over 1000 data points for each set of CPUs. We are cherry-picking a few to give some sense of CPU scaling.

Python Linux 4.4.2 Kernel Compile Benchmark

This is one of the most requested benchmarks for STH over the past few years. The task was simple, we have a standard configuration file, the Linux 4.4.2 kernel from, and make the standard auto-generated configuration utilizing every thread in the system. We are expressing results in terms of compiles per hour to make the results easier to read.

Inspur Systems NF5280M5 Linux Kernel Compile Benchmarks High End CPUs
Inspur Systems NF5280M5 Linux Kernel Compile Benchmarks High-End CPUs

Here you can see an example of CPU scaling with the Inspur NF5280M5 using different Intel Xeon Gold and Platinum offerings. There is a fairly wide range. We are only showing dual-socket performance results, not single-socket results in this test. The server is capable of going up to the dual Intel Xeon Platinum 8280 configuration above and down to a single Intel Xeon Bronze CPU.

c-ray 1.1 Performance

We have been using c-ray for our performance testing for years now. It is a ray tracing benchmark that is extremely popular to show differences in processors under multi-threaded workloads. We are going to use our new Linux-Bench2 8K render to show differences.

Inspur Systems NF5280M5 C Ray 8K Benchmark High End CPUs
Inspur Systems NF5280M5 C Ray 8K Benchmark High-End CPUs

This test tends to scale well with cores and clock speed. As a result, there are results here such as the dual Intel Xeon Gold 5220 that see massive generational improvements (30%+) versus the previous generation Intel Xeon Gold 5120 parts.

7-zip Compression Performance

7-zip is a widely used compression/ decompression program that works cross-platform. We started using the program during our early days with Windows testing. It is now part of Linux-Bench.

Inspur Systems NF5280M5 7zip Compression Benchmark
Inspur Systems NF5280M5 7zip Compression Benchmark

On the compression/ decompression side, we can see another workload that scales fairly well with core counts. Here, chips like the dual Intel Xeon Gold 6242 setup are interesting to buyers. The Gold 6242 is a high-clocked 16 core part that seems almost made for Microsoft Windows Server 2019 16-core license packs.

OpenSSL Performance

OpenSSL is widely used to secure communications between servers. This is an important protocol in many server stacks. We first look at our sign tests:

Inspur Systems NF5280M5 OpenSSL Sign Benchmark
Inspur Systems NF5280M5 OpenSSL Sign Benchmark

Here are the verify results:

Inspur Systems NF5280M5 OpenSSL Verify Benchmark
Inspur Systems NF5280M5 OpenSSL Verify Benchmark

OpenSSL is a foundational technology in today’s application infrastructure. As one can see, one can get a fairly significant performance in the midrange market. This is another area where SKUs like the dual Intel Xeon Gold 5220 showed significant performance gains in the second generation Intel Xeon Scalable SKU stack.

Chess Benchmarking

Chess is an interesting use case since it has almost unlimited complexity. Over the years, we have received a number of requests to bring back chess benchmarking. We have been profiling systems and are ready to start sharing results:

Inspur Systems NF5280M5 Chess Benchmark
Inspur Systems NF5280M5 Chess Benchmark

Here we can see the Intel Xeon Platinum parts perform very well. On the heavy computation workloads, the extra power and thermal headroom of these parts allow them to perform very well.

GROMACS STH Small AVX2 Enabled

We have a small GROMACS molecule simulation we previewed in the first AMD EPYC 7601 Linux benchmarks piece. In Linux-Bench2 we are using a “small” test for single and dual-socket capable machines. Our GROMACS test will use the AVX-512 and AVX2 extensions if available.

Inspur Systems NF5280M5 GROMACS STH Small
Inspur Systems NF5280M5 GROMACS STH Small

One of the areas that we have noted repeatedly is the AVX-512 performance of the new 2nd Generation Intel Xeon Scalable family. Chips like the Intel Xeon Platinum 8260 and Platinum 8268 perform very well in AVX-512 workloads. This is a key feature that Intel has over the AMD EPYC 7002 series processors.

Next, we are going to take a look at the Inspur Systems NF5280M5 storage and networking performance along with the test configuration before moving on to power and the STH Server Spider.

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Patrick has been running STH since 2009 and covers a wide variety of SME, SMB, and SOHO IT topics. Patrick is a consultant in the technology industry and has worked with numerous large hardware and storage vendors in the Silicon Valley. The goal of STH is simply to help users find some information about server, storage and networking, building blocks. If you have any helpful information please feel free to post on the forums.


  1. Is Inspur going to do an AMD EPYC 7002 Rome server? I’d like to see that reviewed if so. If not, they’re behind.

  2. Hot Swap Internal Fans?
    Who is going to pull a rack server out and remove the cover with out shutting it down first?

  3. Basically everyone who wants to avoid unnecessary down-time.
    (Servers with hot-swap components are designed to run without a lid for short periods of time.)


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