Intel has a new version of its ASIC-based DPU at Intel Vision 2022. The Intel Mount Evans is a joint design project between Google and Intel for Google’s cloud infrastructure. We also got this new DPU/ IPU along with an updated roadmap on the company’s future IPU lines both on the ASIC and FPGA + x86 sides that we covered in Intel IPU Plans Revealed for 800Gbps IPUs in 2025. For now, let us get to the hardware.
Intel Mount Evans IPU ASIC DPU at Intel Vision 2022
This is the new Intel Mount Evans ASIC IPU. It is still a pre-release blue board, but we can see a number of interesting features in this revision. This is part of Intel’s 200G generation of IPUs and we can see the Arm Neoverse ASIC in the middle that also has Intel’s acceleration IP onboard. Memory packages flank the ASIC. There is what appears to be a USB debug/ console port on the top, and a six-pin power connector on the rear. We are seeing more DPUs use external power as well, like the BlueField-2 P variants.
On the back, we have the two pluggable optics ports powered by the ASICs 200G MAC. There is also a 1GbE port for out-of-band management. That is similar to the port we used in our ZFS without a Server Using the NVIDIA BlueField-2 DPU piece.
Here is a picture that is solely being added because it is my favorite one we have of the new board.
Followed by my least favorite one. This is me with the card:
One can see that this is now much smaller than what was shown off in 2021. Here is the 2021 Mount Evans that featured a significantly larger PCB, more edge connectors, and a different memory configuration.
The show floor Mount Evans product is a QWZD ES2 stepping made with “MY” Malaysia markings. Previously, Intel showed off a QW3W US-marked chip.
From what we understand, the blue Mount Evans card is still not the final revision, but it is closer to what will go GA and become available in 2023 (outside of Google.)
We are 100% excited for Mount Evans at STH. We recently did a fun Geekbench 5 run on the BlueField-2 DPU to give some sense of where the industry was in 2021 when DPUs really started becoming available. Mount Evans has significantly more processing power with the Neoverse N1 cores, more memory bandwidth, and a more integrated packet processing engine making it an exciting card.
Now we just need to wait until 2023 to be able to get them after Intel rolls the product out for the Google cloud in 2022. The benefit, however, is that the cards that come out for general availability outside of Google will have gone through a lot of testing. It appears that testing has already led to several iterations and that is important for delivering a higher quality first-generation product.
More on IPUs at STH in the next two weeks, and we will have more DPU coverage as they arrive.