This is a review we have wanted to do for ages. Namely, we can finally show you an Arm server from Supermicro. The Supermicro ARS-210ME-FNR is a 2U edge/ telco form factor that combines a short-depth chassis with the Ampere Altra Max M128-30 128-core Arm Neoverse-N1 processor. Let us take a look at this unique system.
Supermicro ARS-210ME-FNR External Hardware Overview
The Supermicro ARS-210ME-FNR is a system designed for the edge and telco markets. As a result, this is not a full-sized server. Instead, it is a 16.9 in or 430mm depth platform. Supermicro calls its Ampere Altra platform the Mt. Hamilton. At first I did not even notice the name, but if you live in the Silicon Valley, you can likely see Mt. Hamilton and the Lick Observatory. It is one of those places you see almost every day, sometimes covered in snow towering over the Valley’s palm trees, but I journeyed to the top last in the mid-1990s. Alas, back to the server.
On the left side, there are six drive bays. All six are PCIe Gen4 NVMe SSD bays.
In the center, we have risers above standard server I/O. We are going to get to the full-height risers in the next section, but the rear I/O consists of two USB 3 ports, a VGA port, an out-of-band management port, and two SFP28 cages. The SFP28 cages are connected via a NVIDIA (Mellanox) ConnectX-4 Lx NIC.
On the opposite side, we get two more full-height risers, a low-profile slot, and then at the bottom, an OCP NIC 3.0 slot.
In this form factor, it is common to have all I/O at the front. Some chassis have power supplies also at the front and some at the rear. This is a system with power supplies at the rear.
The fans are hot-swappable large Delta units on heavy-duty levers to extract and install them.
The power supplies are standard Supermicro redundant power supplies. This is a 1.6kW 80Plus Titanium unit.
Next, let us get inside the system.