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VIA Cluster Server Platform Reference Design

Efficient – Economic - Secure

The VIA Cluster Server Platform reference design is an energy efficient high density server solution developed specifically to address the requirements of small to medium sized business, enterprises and schools to deliver processing services efficiently to students, customers and employees. Using the dual processor based VIA VT310-DP Mini-ITX mainboard, the reference design enables developers and system integrators to create innovative service based server solutions with lower implementation, operation and maintenance costs..

With an estimated compound growth rate of 25% through 2006, clusters are considered one of the fastest growing segments of the server market. VIA has created this innovative and efficient cluster reference design to facilitate system integrators and developers in getting high density server solutions to more markets faster.

Through the ultra low power consumption of VIA VT310-DP Mini-ITX mainboards, the VIA Cluster Server Platform makes possible high density server solutions that require no power or cooling infrastructure changes, and also makes redundant the need for system and processor fans for near-silent operation.

With dual 1GHz VIA Eden-N processors on each mainboard, a 16U configuration boasts 64 processors drawing only up to 1 kilowatt of power from a standard AC power outlet, enabling whole new markets for parallel processing without the traditionally high implementation, operation and maintenance costs.

Click here to download our whitepaper on cluster server solutions based on the VIA VT310-DP Mini-ITX mainboard.


Components

The VIA Cluster Server Platform reference design comprises low profile 1U units each with two VIA VT310-DP Mini-ITX mainboards, enabling each 1U unit to operate as two individual server nodes. Leveraging the superb power-performance ratio and thermal properties of the fanless 1GHz VIA Eden-N processors, the VIA Cluster Server Platform draws up to a very low 1 kilowatt from a standard AC power outlet, making it the performance per watt leader of its class.

Inside a complete 1U server solution (with two VIA VT310-DP Mini-ITX mainboards)

The VIA VT310-DP Mini-ITX in a 1U unit of the cluster reference design permits two 3.5" IDE/SATA hard drives to be installed with the mainboards. When integrated into the complete cluster reference design, this allows developers to utilize a total of 64 1GHz VIA Eden-N processors over 32 server nodes in a 16U rack. Combined with relevant middleware, the reference design empowers all cluster configurations including high performance, high availability and load balancing designs. The VIA PadLock Security Engine included in each VIA Eden-N processor on the VIA VT310-DP Mini-ITX mainboard also offers developers the tools to secure data stored and transmitted in real-time with little penalty to processor utilization.

The VIA VT310-DP Mini-ITX Mainboard

To meet the growing demand for economic, efficient and secure server solutions, VIA has introduced the VIA VT310-DP Mini-ITX mainboard. The first dual processor Mini-ITX mainboard, the VIA VT310-DP Mini-ITX is the performance per watt leader of its class and through its comprehensive set of on-board features enables economic and efficient implementation into a variety of server scenarios.

Dual VIA Eden-N Processors

The VIA VT310-DP Mini-ITX mainboard is powered by two VIA Eden-N processors, that have been designed for ultra low power consumption and operating temperatures. Embedded into each VIA Eden-N processor is the VIA PadLock Security Engine that empowers real-time encryption/decryption of data using the military-grade AES algorithm at speeds of up to 22 Gbps. Also included with the engine are dual quantum based random number generators to provide an unshakable foundation for the encryption process. Integrated security offered by the VIA PadLock Security Engine ensures speeds and efficiency many times of what is possible with software only and, unlike software-only approaches, has negligible impact on processor performance.

VIA CN400 North Bridge & VIA VT8237R South Bridge

The rich feature set of the VIA CN400 North Bridge and VIA VT8237R South Bridge core logic chipset enables a wide range of multimedia, connectivity and storage tools that reduce CPU utilization (thereby allowing the solution to handle more tasks faster) and reduce the requirement for peripheral equipment to be installed in creating a complete server node for cluster solutions.


Features and Benefits

Economic Solution
The VIA Cluster Server Platform has been specifically designed to significantly reduce the traditionally high implementation, operation and maintenance costs of the cluster solutions, extending the benefits of massively parallel computing & processing to schools, small and medium business as well enterprise.

Efficient Solution
Using the ultra low power consumption of the dual VIA Eden-N processors, the VIA VT310-DP Mini-ITX mainboard is the performance per watt leader of its class. When combined with a comprehensive feature set, the VIA Cluster Server Platform delivers efficient performance.

Secure Solution
Embedded into every VIA Eden-N processor included in the VIA Cluster Server Platform is the VIA PadLock Security Engine. When implemented, the VIA PadLock Security Engine protects data stored and transmitted in real-time.


Features of the VIA VT310-DP Mini-ITX Mainboard

Feature
Description
Processor
  • VIA Eden-N 1GHz processors
    • VIA PadLock Security Engine
    • PowerSaver 3.0 – Dynamically reduces power consumption
    • 128K L1 and 64K L2 Cache
    • 2 x TLB (128 entries 8 way)
  • Each server node in the reference design uses dual VIA Eden-N 1GHz processors
Chipset
  • VIA CN400 North Bridge
  • VIA 8237R South Bridge
Memory
  • 2 x DDR400/333/266 DIMM Sockets
  • Up to 2GB memory size, non-buffered, unregistered, non-ECC
  • Each server node in the reference design has 512mb DDR400 memory
Graphics
  • Integrated S3 UniChrome IGP Graphics
    • MPEG-4 Acceleration
    • MPEG-2 Decodin
Storage
  • 1 x UltraDMA 133/100/66 connector
  • 2 x Serial ATA ports
  • Each server node in the reference design uses 80GB ATA100 hard drives
Audio System
  • VIA Vinyl Six-TRAC 6-channel AC'97 Audio
Ethernet
  • 2 x 10/100 Base-T Ethernet controllers
  • 1 x 1000 Base-T Ethernet controllers
Other I/O
  • Two USB ports (with provision for extra two USB ports through use of a front header)
  • 1 x VGA port
  • 1 x RS-232 COM port
  • 3 x RJ45 LAN ports

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