Oracle Corporation have announced that the long awaited SPARC T5 processors, and the server hardware that they run on - will start shipping this week. With big red claiming immediate availability of the tin, and cited that current prospective T4 buyers held off on purchasing, chosing instead to wait for the T5 release. And we don't blame them, if the reported speed increases are accurate.

“Next week, we will start deliveries of our next generation of servers, built using our new SPARC T5 microprocessor, the world’s fastest microprocessor. Next week, we will publish 17 world record benchmarks, including a TPC benchmark showing that the SPARC T5 is the fastest processor in the world for database. The SPECjEnterprise benchmark, showing the SPARC T5, is the fastest processor in the world for Java middleware,”Larry Ellison, CEO Oracle Corporation

With regards to the SPARC T5 chip, the core count is doubled from 8 on the T4 to 16, with a clock speed boost to 3.6 GHz (up from 3.0 GHz). We expect the new chips to integrate some 'Oracle software specific' accelerators to boost performance in the red stack. The chip is fabricated on 28nm process by TSMC, containing 1.5 billion transistors and 13 metal layers. Each core is also capable of running 8 threads simultaneously - making it capable of executing 128 threads in total.

Oracle SPARC FamilyOracle SPARC Family

The cores communicate with a high-bandwidth nine-port crossbar switch, sharing an 8MB, eight-bank L3 cache. The memory sub-system (DDR3) also supports nearly 3 times the bandwidth of the previous T4 generation - utilising a new memory controller, 12.8 Gbit/s per lane memory links and a companion buffer chip. The T5 is also PCIe Gen3 compliant, thanks to a new controller supporting 32GB/s peak bandwidth with full duplex operating per socket - through dual ports.

With regards to the server architecture that feature T5 as standard, please check back later this week for more information, or talk directly to your BSI Account Manager.