At Computex 2019, we saw a number of products in the Supermicro booth. This included systems like the Supermicro BigTwin that we recently reviewed. Instead of focusing on products we have reviewed, we wanted to show off some of the new and unique embedded server and networking products we saw. A major theme of 2019 and the show is the need for edge intelligence and network virtualization as we move into the 5G era. These products are designed for those types of deployments.
The Supermicro SYS-E403-9D-8C-FN13TP is a very versatile edge platform. We are hearing that it is often being used in smart city deployments. The box itself is relatively compact 4.3″ x 10.5″ x 16″.
As one can see, there are two 10Gbase-T ports, two SFP+ 10GbE ports, and eight 1GbE ports for networking, and that is the base configuration. There are also three PCIe Gen3 slots that one can add cards such as three quad port 10GbE cards or three GPUs. That yields absolutely massive networking for NFV applications. GPUs allow functionality such as the ingest and processing of video streams using cards such as the NVIDIA Tesla T4.
With the eight-core Intel Xeon D-2146NT this has significant processor capabilities as well. The four DIMM slots can handle up to 512GB using 4x 128GB DIMMs.
The top of the Supermicro SYS-E403-9D-8C-FN13TP has four 2.5″ drive bays but there are also three M.2 slots. One is a standard M.2 22110/ 2280 slot. There is also a 2232 and a 3042 slot. Overall, we like this form factor and the customization options for the design.
Supermicro SYS-1019D-FRN5TP Network Appliance
We also saw the Supermicro SYS-1019D-FRN5TP which is a 1U networking appliance that we have not typically seen from Supermicro. Typically, Supermicro appliances utilize onboard networking and PCIe cards or SIOM/ UIO cards. For the Supermicro SYS-1019D-FRN5TP, we have up to four AIOM or Advanced I/O Modules.
At Computex 2019 we saw the AOC-AG-i8 8-port Intel i350 based AIOM options in the Supermicro SYS-1019D-FRN5TP. We have not seen other modules from the company, so it is likely that there is a customer pushing for 8-port modular I/O modules that can be easily customized.
Inside there is an Intel Xeon D-2146NT 8-core SoC that powers the platform. This includes two 10Gbase-T and two SFP+ 10GbE ports. There is also a 1GbE management port and Ethernet data management port. In total, one can get up to 37 NICs in this 1U platform per Supermicro.
Storage is surprisingly expansive including two SATA DOM ports, two M.2 (up to 22110) slots, and two EDSFF slots that are front hot swappable on the right side of the chassis.
The edge is getting a lot of attention and Supermicro at Computex 2019 followed that theme. We saw two largely new platforms that had previously been the domain of specialty embedded products firms. Instead, these new Supermicro platforms are designed to bring the same manageability of Supermicro’s mainstream servers to the edge. At a corporate level, 5G edge buildouts represent a large opportunity and these embedded systems are a TAM expansion vehicle.