It’s fairly obvious that IBM’s POWER9 processors are, well, powerful. Staggeringly powerful. The evidence is straightforward: the Department of Energy’s Summit is the world’s fastest supercomputer, and it runs on POWER9 cores. Every day, Power Systems advance the frontiers of science on behalf of the world’s leading superpower.
However, if you’re not the world’s leading superpower, can you make use of POWER9? This is the question facing enterprises that are considering POWER9 scale-out servers in response to increasing demand. The answer is yes. Leading enterprises from a huge variety of industries count on Power Systems to handle their high-intensity workloads. Let’s take a look at a few case studies.
Making the Money Move
Success can make life complicated. Just ask Global Payment Services, one of the largest payment processing firms in the Middle East. In 2016, they processed 40 million transactions, and in 2017, they processed twice that many. It’s a level of growth that made their competitors envious and gave their IT team a lot to think about.
Moreover, as the company’s activities increased in scale, they also grew in complexity. Money isn’t what it used to be. Technologies like Blockchain are disrupting the global financial system, and regulations around international currency exchange are constantly changing. As a result, Global Payment Services needed everything at once: power, ease, and scalability.
They achieved it with two Power Systems S924 servers. Their performance goals were met instantly: upon installation, GPS’ average payment processing time decreased by 50%. That came hand-in-hand with ease of operation. IBM’s virtualization tools allowed them to create operating system instances for each institution they worked with, making security and data management simple. Moreover, the servers brought about a new level of reliability. Previously, GPS struggled with downtime, experiencing a half-hour per month on average, but POWER9 gave them near-perfect availability.
Mainstreaming the Supercomputer
Lots of companies can benefit from machine learning and artificial intelligence. Far fewer have the computing infrastructure to do it themselves. That gap is filled by Nimbix, a High-Performing Computing (HPC) platform company that makes it easy for enterprises of any size to secure the processing power they need to do their heavy lifting. Increasingly, they’re recommending that their customers use containerized HPC applications running on POWER9 hardware.
According to Nimbix CEO Steve Hebert, their Power Systems stack is achieving levels of performance that surprise even experienced users of HPC platforms. He says this about a San Diego research group that used HPC’s applications to train a neural network: “The research team was so impressed with the Nimbix cloud, they said that it was the highest-performance system that they had ever run their model on.” This performance differential is confirmed by tests that Nimbix has run, showing a 2.5x performance increase over what’s available from commodity cloud providers.
Furnishing the Future
Japanese interior design company Nitori has always been innovative. In the 1980s, it became the first firm in its industry to open a multi-tiered, fully automated warehouse. Now, it’s managing a multi-continental balancing act: simultaneously expanding into America and growing its domestic operation. The company plans to have 1,000 retail stores open by 2022. This is an immense undertaking, given that Nitori manages everything: design, manufacturing, storage, and deliver—and, as of 2018, it was a little too immense for their old server infrastructure.
To handle the increased workload, they chose the IBM Power Systems E980. Its scalability made it perfect for a company that deals with spikes of seasonal demand, and, with upgraded IBM DS8886F all-flash storage, the E980 will effortlessly manage the huge influx of data required to power a global supply chain for years to come. The choice was also driven by simplicity: with assistance from IBM Systems Lab Services, database and application migration was a smooth process, and the server required little configuration to achieve optimal performance.
For Every Kind of Complexity
These diverse use cases show that POWER9 servers are a great choice for high-intensity workloads at any scale, whether you’re tracking global furniture sales or global weather patterns. They provide extreme performance with the five-nines reliability that brought previous generations of IBM Power Systems to 80% of Fortune 100 companies. Whatever you’re doing, POWER9 can probably do it faster.