Lenovo announces broad range of enterprise servers

The new offerings include new four and eight socket X6 systems, Lenovo Flex System X6 Compute Nodes, and both Lenovo X6 and joint Lenovo-EMC solutions optimized for SAP HANA.

System x3850 X6 Right Facing (Lenovo Branded)

The Lenovo System x3850 X6

Lenovo has announced a series of updates to its enterprise servers. These include the four-socket Lenovo System x3850 X6 and the eight-socket Lenovo System x3950, in both rack and blade form factors. These are part of Lenovo’s flagship portfolio of X6 servers. Servers with applications around them include new offerings for the SAP HANA platform, including two new EMC supported offerings certified by SAP as an enterprise storage solution for SAP HANA.

“I would group these enterprise announcements into three categories – enterprise performance, application integration, and efficiency in the data center,” said Stuart McRae, Director of Enterprise Servers at Lenovo. “We think those three areas are critical to enterprise partners and customers.”

The new four-socket Lenovo System x3850 X6 and the eight-socket Lenovo System x3950 will feature the X6 Intel Xeon processor E7-4800 v3 product family, which deliver over 50 per cent greater performance than previous-generation systems. Their modular design permits the easy swap-out of Compute Books to accommodate next-generation processors, and also allows upgrade of other key components, like storage, full-height and half-height I/O cards, fans and power supplies. They support DDR4 memory, and up to 192 DIMM slots.

“These servers can handle demanding database and analytics workloads and enterprise virtualization,” McRae said. “We will announce 5-7 new worldwide benchmark records in the four-way space next week, including one that is 53 per cent faster than the current number one, which is an HP benchmark, and which is 71 per cent faster than the leading UNIX score in that category.”

To coincide with SAP’s SAPPHIRE NOW event, Lenovo also offered two sets of SAP HANA-optimized solutions. One is the latest version of solutions based on a previous x86 IBM partnering with SAP, and is based on Lenovo’s System x3850 X6 and System x3950 X6 server platforms. The other set are SAP solutions in partnership with EMC.

“With the four-way and greater servers, it’s all about the applications wrapped around it, and we have the largest share in appliances for SAP HANA,” McRae said. “The SAP partnership with IBM came over with the x86 line, and these new models are impressive proof points of our development and integration of those products.”

System x3950 X6 Right Facing (Lenovo Branded)

The Lenovo System x3950 X6

The x6 solutions from Lenovo optimized and certified by SAP to run SAP HANA are based on Lenovo’s System x3850 X6 and System x3950 X6 server platforms and incorporate the new Intel Xeon E7v3 processor. When combined with Lenovo Enterprise Solution Services, they can be deployed in days, helping customers speed deployment of new applications and simplify ongoing management of their infrastructure for SAP HANA. They also offer near-linear scalability, because simply adding more nodes to the existing infrastructure expands memory capacity for SAP HANA, to produce extremely fast response times for analytical workloads and business queries.

Lenovo will also be showcasing its System x3850 X6 servers with SAP HANA as part of a broader solution, which includes wearables, on stage at SAP SAPPHIRE NOW.

“We have taken the System X technology and will be demoing the data centre to the wrist,” McRae said. That’s not a typo. Lenovo and Bluefin Solutions will be demonstrating a real-time, mobile data capture and analytics application which showcases a fully connected enterprise, from device to datacentre, utilizing Motorola smartphones and Moto 360 watches, ThinkPad laptops, Yoga tablets, and the servers.

The joint Lenovo-EMC HANA solutions and services feature Lenovo’s System x servers and EMC’s VMAX, VNX and XtremeIO Enterprise Storage offerings. They let customers leverage their existing hardware and infrastructure components – like EMC enterprise storage – for their SAP HANA-based environments.

“These are what I referred to as efficiency – the ability to build totally efficient solutions,” McRae said. “Expanding these EMC solutions to also include HANA is a net-new.”

Lenovo’s recently announced EMC VSPEX reference architectures, for private cloud and VDI deployments, have been validated to support SAP solution-based landscapes, enabling faster implementation, simplified management and reduced TCO. These combine Lenovo’s Flex System technology with EMC Powered Backup Built for Virtualized Environments. Lenovo and EMC will also provide sizing tools that help simplify and accelerate deployment of SAP applications, while enabling simpler management via familiar tools.

Other components of the Lenovo announcements include Lenovo Flex System X6 Compute Nodes, including the Flex System x480 X6, which is scalable to a four-socket system, and the Flex System x880 X6,the first scalable eight-socket Intel Xeon processor-based blade server. These enhanced compute nodes feature the future Intel Xeon processor E7-8800/4800 v3 product families, each equipped with up to 144 cores, and deliver faster application performance for workloads that require high levels of performance, memory capacity and high resiliency.

Lenovo XClarity, an automated systems management solution for small-to-large enterprises, service providers, and government organizations, was also announced. Lenovo XClarity addresses critical customer requirements including the need to centralize and streamline hardware resource management, speed cloud and traditional infrastructure deployments, and enable visibility and control of physical resources from external, higher-level management software tools. It is available in two editions, Lenovo XClarity Administrator and Lenovo XClarity Pro, and supports the new X6 server solutions just announced.

Finally, Lenovo announced pretested infrastructure solutions with multiple vendors that utilize Lenovo server, storage, and networking hardware. These prequalified solutions include:             Lenovo Solution for Microsoft Scale Out File Server;                 Lenovo Solution for Microsoft SharePoint Server 2013; Lenovo Solution for Microsoft Exchange Server 2013; Lenovo Solution for VMware vCloud Suite 6.0; Lenovo Solution for VMware Horizon 6.0; Lenovo Solution for Citrix XenDesktop 7.6; Lenovo Solution for Microsoft SQL Server 2014; Lenovo Solution for Engineering Analysis; Lenovo Solution for ANSYS; Lenovo Solution for Financial Services; and Lenovo Solution for Life Sciences.

The System x3850 X6 and the System x3950 X6 will be available beginning May 26 and will start at $USD 7,979. The Flex System x480 X6 and Flex System x880 X6 will be available beginning May 27 and will start at $USD 10,415.