Red Hat ARM Partner Early Access Program reaches over 35 members, and this means that the ARM momentum is very strong. Red Hat Enterprise Linux is the main GNU/Linux distribution in the server market, so companies like AMD, Cavium, Applied Micro and HP are looking for its partnership to accelerate the setup of the enterprise software.
Thanks to this collaboration the appeal of ARM in the server market is growing very fast, insomuch as either Lenovo is studying the use of ARM SoCs (Cavium ThunderX) in their own products. Recently we have seen that the Linux Kernel 3.19 has added a lot of new features about ARMv8 arch and HSA, and a lot of new additions are expected in the near future: "It’s certainly an exciting time to be working on HSA and ARM technologies and on the development of innovations that we believe will be highly competitive in the server market. Keep following us for more updates on our ecosystem progress and new software releases", said Margaret Lewis, Director of Software, Server Business Unit at AMD.
Above mentioned Cavium is benefiting greatly of this partnership, too: “Red Hat and Cavium continue to collaborate to ensure that the rich feature set of ThunderX that includes 48 core single socket and 96 core dual socket configurations, virtSOC™ technology with complete system virtualization along with integrated Ethernet, SATA and PCIe, is fully supported” said Larry Wikelius, director, Thunder Ecosystems and Partner Enablement, Cavium.
However, Red Hat is not only influential on the software side, but either in the hardware side. Some months ago it said a few words in praise of Seattle SoC of AMD: “It's a standardized, server-grade SoC. It follows every single server design philosophy that AMD knows from working with x86, and it also follows all of the kinds of advice and guidelines that the industry has been working on over the last three years. It's a very, very nice design”. This means that only well designed chips will have success and also the success of ARM as ISA in the server market is beholden to hardware design. The cheapness of ARM hardware is a secondary matter in this market, instead of reliability and technical support. For this reason MediaTek, RockChip, Qualcomm and Samsung could have no success in building server-grade ARM SoCs: in the Mobile market (especially with the low-end and mid-end devices) the reliability and technical support are non essential (closed drivers, poor SDKs, etc.), instead of cheapness.
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