Lenovo ThinkSystem Servers Continue to Lead the Industry in Performance and Customer ValueArticle

Abstract

Lenovo ThinkSystem servers continue to dominate data center performance with a total of 155 current world record benchmark results spanning a wide range of industry benchmarks. This total includes 83 world records for servers equipped with second-generation Intel Xeon Scalable processors, plus 29 world records set by servers running second-generation AMD EPYC processors, and another 43 current world records set by servers using first-generation Intel Xeon Scalable processors.

These results are current as of January 1, 2020. They were achieved with systems ranging from single-socket (1S) to eight-socket (8S) and workloads ranging from general business applications and infrastructure to Big Data/Analytics, software development/testing, and engineering/technical computing.

Change History

Changes in the February 11 update:

  • Product Guide links added for the servers tested
  • Minor text and formatting edits

 

Introduction

Lenovo ThinkSystem servers currently hold an incredible 155 world records for performance. This total consists of 83 #1 results set on systems equipped with second-generation Intel Scalable processors, plus another 43 using first-generation Xeon Scalable processors, and 29 more using second-generation AMD EPYC processors. This is more than 1.5 times as many #1 results as any other server vendor.

These results were achieved on a wide variety of workloads that include Applications, Data Management, Application Development and Testing, Infrastructure, and Engineering/Technical computing. Lenovo achieved these world-records across multiple ThinkSystem platforms ranging from single-socket to 8-socket, spanning Intel and AMD architectures. This demonstrates Lenovo's ability to design systems that create value for customers across architectures, workloads, and industries. 

Many of the latest world record benchmark results were set by ThinkSystem SR950 and SR650 rack servers that incorporate the new second-generation Intel Xeon Scalable processors. They offer increased performance over the first generation processors, as well as support for faster 2933 MHz TruDDR4 memory. These servers also support Intel Optane DC persistent memory, which is designed specifically for data center workloads. Optane DC offers a new, flexible tier of memory that creates an unprecedented combination of high-capacity, affordability, and persistence.

Other #1 benchmark results were achieved by ThinkSystem SR655 and SR635 rack servers using second-generation AMD EPYC processors. The SR655 is our newest single-socket 2U rack server and the SR635 is our newest single-socket 1U rack server. AMD EPYC 7002 Series processors offer up to 64 cores each and 128 PCIe Gen 4 lanes, making them ideal for compute-intensive and I/O-intensive applications.

Additional #1 results were achieved using Lenovo SR860, SR850, SN850, SN550, and SD530 servers equipped with second-generation Intel Xeon Scalable Family processors.

While specific ThinkSystem models were used for these benchmark tests, much of the same technology and attention to detail is prevalent throughout the ThinkSystem product line, providing exceptional performance and reliability across the board.

This article summarizes the outstanding performance of the world record ThinkSystem benchmark wins.

Applications — 25 Current World Records

Lenovo ThinkSystem SR950, SR860, SR655, and SR650 servers achieved 25 current world records in benchmarks designed to test system performance across a range of application workload types. Application types include Collaboration, Enterprise Resource Management, Supply Chain, Customer Resource Management, and other typical data center applications.

SAP Sales and Distribution (SAP SD) Benchmark

The 2 ThinkSystem world record results on the SAP Sales and Distribution Benchmark

Performance

ThinkSystem SR950:

  • 4-Socket – 1 current world record (Windows)

ThinkSystem SR655:

  • 1-Socket – 1 current world record (Windows)

About this benchmark: SAP Sales and Distribution (SD) Standard Application Benchmarks test the hardware and database performance of SAP applications and components. SAP Application Performance Standard (SAPS) is a hardware-independent unit of measurement that describes the performance of a system in creating the order, creating a delivery note for the order, displaying the order, changing the delivery, posting a goods issue, listing orders, and creating an invoice.

Why it matters: If you are running SAP Business Suite applications, a leadership benchmark score means this system is the highest-performing server in the industry for processing your business transaction workflows in an SAP environment.

SPEC CPU 2017 Benchmark

The 23 ThinkSystem world record results on the SPEC CPU 2017 and SPEC CPU 2006* benchmarks include:

SPEC CPU 2017 Performance

ThinkSystem SR950:

  • 8-Socket 2 current world records
  • 6-Socket 1 current world record
  • 4-Socket 1 current world record
  • 3-Socket 4 current world records

ThinkSystem SR860:

  • 4-Socket 1 current world record

ThinkSystem SR655:

  • 1-Socket 10 current world records

 

SPEC CPU 2006* Performance

ThinkSystem SR950:

  • 8-Socket 2 current world records
  • 4-Socket 1 current world record

ThinkSystem SR650:

  • 1-Socket 1 current world record

About this benchmark: SPEC CPU 2017 contains SPEC's next-generation, industry-standardized, CPU intensive suites for measuring and comparing compute intensive-performance, stressing a system's processor, memory subsystem and compiler. CPU 2017 has 43 sub-benchmarks, organized into four suites. SPEC designed these suites to provide a comparative measure of compute-intensive performance across the widest practical range of hardware using workloads developed from real user applications. 

* The SPEC CPU 2006 benchmark has been replaced by the SPEC CPU 2017 benchmark and new CPU 2006 results are no longer accepted by SPEC. (Existing results are still valid.)

Why it matters: If you are running compute-intensive workloads, a leadership benchmark score means this server is the highest performing server in the industry in terms of how fast a server completes a CPU-intensive task (speed) and/or how much a server can accomplish in a certain amount of time (throughput or rate measurement).

Data Management — 65 Current World Records

Lenovo ThinkSystem SR950 and SR650 servers delivered 65 current world records on benchmarks designed to test the performance of servers performing Structured Data Management analysis, Structured Data Analytics, and Unstructured Data Analytics.

SAP HANA (BWoH) Benchmark

The 11 ThinkSystem world record results on the HANA BWoH benchmark in a single-node setup include:

Performance

ThinkSystem SR950:

  • 4-Socket (1.3B  and 2.6B Records v1*) 6 current world records
  • 4-Socket (10.4B and 11.7B Records v3) 5 current world records

About this benchmark: The SAP BW Edition for SAP HANA (BW/4HANA) Standard Application Benchmark is the latest addition to the list of SAP BW benchmarks and goes well beyond the scope and features used in the BW-AML benchmark. The benchmark is designed to fully utilize the new capabilities of SAP HANA to process the benchmark workload. The benchmark consists of three phases: data load, query throughput, and query runtime.

* The current SAP BW edition for SAP HANA benchmark is version 3. Existing v1 and v2 results are still valid; however, SAP will no longer accept new benchmark results for versions v1 and v2.

Why it matters: If you are running SAP HANA, a #1 benchmark score means this server is the highest performing server in the industry for processing your SAP HANA memory-intensive database and analytics workloads.

STAC-M3 Benchmark

The 48 ThinkSystem world record results on the STAC-M3 benchmark include:

Performance

ThinkSystem SR950:

  • 4-Socket 33 current world records (9 Antuco suite + 16 Shasta suite + 8 Kanaga suite, with a two-year data set size)

ThinkSystem SR650:

  • 2-Socket 15 current world records (Antuco suite)

About this benchmark: The STAC-M3 Benchmark suite is the industry standard for testing solutions that enable high-speed analytics on time series data. The STAC-M3 benchmarks measures challenging areas such as time-series analytics, risk simulations, and processing of very-high-speed data. The key metric is query response time. In particular, STAC benchmarks test high-speed analytics on time-series data tick-by-tick market data. The benchmark is used by large global banks, brokerage houses, exchanges, hedge funds, proprietary trading shops, and other market participants.

Why it matters: If you are running high-speed financial services or securities workloads, a #1 benchmark score means this server is the highest performing server in the industry for processing your high-speed analytics and financial transactions.

TPC-E Benchmark

The 5 ThinkSystem world record results on the TPC-E benchmark include:

TPC-E Performance

ThinkSystem SR950:

  • 4-Socket 1 current world record:

ThinkSystem SR650:

  • 2-Socket 1 current world record:

ThinkSystem SR655:

  • 1-Socket 1 current world record:

TPC-E Price/Performance

ThinkSystem SR950: 

  • 4-Socket 1 current world record:

ThinkSystem SR655:

  • 1-Socket 1 current world record:

About this benchmark: The TPC-E benchmark is designed to enable users to more objectively measure and compare the performance and price of various OLTP systems. The TPC-E benchmark uses a database to model a brokerage firm with customers who generate transactions related to trades, account inquiries, and market research. Although the underlying business model of TPC-E is that of a brokerage firm, the database schema, data population, transactions, and implementation rules have been designed to be broadly representative of modern OLTP systems in general.

Why it matters: If you are running On-Line Transaction Processing (OLTP) or decision-support workloads and databases, a leadership benchmark score means this server is the highest-performing server in the industry for your data-intensive OLTP transactions or data intensive queries.

TPC-x BB

The 1 ThinkSystem world record result on the TPC-x BB benchmark:

Performance

ThinkSystem SR650:

  • 2-Socket (36+3 nodes) 1 current world record

About this benchmark: The TPCx-BB Express Benchmark BB (TPCx-BB) measures the hardware and software performance of systems running Hadoop. It runs 30 frequently performed analytical queries in the manner of retailers with physical and online store presences. It uses machine learning algorithms for semi-structured and unstructured data queries, and SQL queries for structured data. 

Why it matters: If your data center runs Hadoop, a world-record benchmark score means a system is the highest performing server in the industry for your complex Big Data processing needs.

Application Development & Testing — 28 Current World Records

Lenovo ThinkSystem SR950 and SR650 hold 28 current world records in benchmarks designed to test server performance in a Java development and testing environment.

SPECjbb2015

The 28 ThinkSystem world record results on the SPECjbb2015 benchmark include:

Performance

ThinkSystem SR950:

  • 8-Socket 6 current world records (Linux and Windows)
  • 6-Socket 6 current world records (Linux and Windows)
  • 4-Socket 4 current world records (Linux)
  • 3-Socket  6 current world records (Linux)

ThinkSystem SR655:

  • 1-Socket 6 current world record (Linux and Windows)

About this benchmark: The SPECjbb 2015 benchmark has been developed from the ground up to measure performance based on the latest Java application features. It is relevant to all audiences interested in Java server performance, including JVM vendors, hardware developers, Java application developers, researchers and members of the academic community.

Why it matters: If you are interested Java server performance, a world-record benchmark score means this server is the highest performing server in the industry for your Java application response time and throughput needs.

Infrastructure — 23 Current World Records

Lenovo ThinkSystem SR950, SR850, SR655, SR650, SR635, SN850, SN550, and SD530 servers earned 23 current world records on benchmarks designed to test the performance of servers utilized in an IT/Web infrastructure role. Workload types include Networking, Systems Management, Virtual Desktop, File & Print, Media Streaming, and Web Serving.

SPEC Power

The 11 ThinkSystem world record results on the SPEC Power benchmark include:

Performance

ThinkSystem SR950:

  • 8-Socket 2 current world records (Linux and Windows)

ThinkSystem SR850:

  • 4-Socket 1 current world record (Linux)

ThinkSystem SN850:

  • 4-Socket/7-node (4S/7N) 2 current world records (Linux and Windows)

ThinkSystem SN550:

  • 14-node (14N) 1 current world record (Windows)

ThinkSystem SD530:

  • 2-Socket/4-node (2S/4N) 2 current world records (Linux and Windows)

ThinkSystem SR655:

  • 1-Socket  1 current world record (Linux)

ThinkSystem SR650:

  • 1-Socket  1 current world record (Linux)

ThinkSystem SR635:

  • 1-Socket  1 current world record (Linux)

About this benchmark: The SPECpower_ssj 2008 benchmark suite measures the power and performance characteristics of server-class computer equipment. It is used to compare power and performance among different servers and serves as a tool set for use in improving server efficiency.

Why it matters: The IT industry, computer manufacturers, and governments are increasingly concerned with the energy use of servers. This benchmark provides a means to measure power (at the AC input) in conjunction with a performance metric. This helps IT managers consider power characteristics along with other selection criteria to increase the efficiency of data centers.

SPEC VIRT_SC 2013

The ThinkSystem world record results on the SPEC virt_sc 2013 benchmark incllude:

Performance

ThinkSystem SR950:

  • 8-Socket 1 current world record
  • 4-Socket 1 current world record

ThinkSystem SR650:

  • 1-Socket 1 current world record

Performance-per-watt

ThinkSystem SR950:

  • 8-Socket 1 current world record
  • 4-Socket 1 current world record

ThinkSystem SR650:

  • 2-Socket 1 current world record

Server Performance-per-watt

ThinkSystem SR950:

  • 8-Socket 1 current world record
  • 4-Socket 1 current world record

ThinkSystem SR650:

  • 2-Socket  1 current world record

About this benchmark: The SPEC virt_sc 2013 benchmark measures the end-to-end performance of all system components including the hardware, virtualization platform, and the virtualized guest operating system and application software. SPEC virt_sc 2013 is the second-generation SPEC VIRT benchmark for evaluating the virtualization performance of datacenter server consolidation, including enterprise-class workloads.

Why it matters: If you virtualize multiple workloads, a world-record benchmark score means this system is the highest performing server in the industry for your memory-intensive virtualized environments.

VMmark 3.1

The 1 ThinkSystem world record result on the VMmark 3.1 benchmark:

Performance

ThinkSystem SR655:

  • 1-Socket/2-node (1S/2N) 1 current world record

About this benchmark: The VMmark 3.1 benchmark measures the performance, scalability, and power consumption of multi-server virtualization platforms. It tests using real-world complex workloads, such as clone and deploy, virtual machine migration, storage migration operations, shared nothing migration, and snapshotting, as well as traditional application-level workloads.

Why it matters: Knowing how effectively and efficiently your servers operate is essential to maximizing performance and scalability while reducing energy costs. A world-record benchmark score means a system is the highest performing server in the industry for your cloud, OLTP, and other virtualization platform workloads.

TPC-x IoT

The 2 ThinkSystem world record results on the TPC-x IoT benchmark include:

Performance

ThinkSystem SR655:

  • 1-Socket (4+1 nodes) 1 current world record

Price/Performance

ThinkSystem SR655:

  • 1-Socket (4+1 nodes) 1 current world record

About this benchmark: The TPCx-IoT benchmark enables direct comparison of different software and hardware solutions for IoT gateways. TPCx-IoT measures the performance, price/performance, and availability IoT gateway systems that receive vast quantities of data from many devices and run real-time analytic queries on that data. The benchmark workload represents typical IoT gateway systems running on standard hardware and software platforms.  

Why it matters: If you gather and process massive amounts of data via IoT devices and need to perform real-time analysis of that data, a world-record benchmark score means a system is the highest performing server in the industry for performing analytic queries on your IoT data.

Engineering/Technical — 14 Current World Records

Lenovo ThinkSystem SR950, SR655, and SR650 servers earned 14 current world records in benchmarks designed to test a system's performance running various Engineering/Technical/HPC workloads.

SPECompG 2012

The 2 ThinkSystem world record results on the SPEC OMP 2012 benchmark include:

Performance

ThinkSystem SR950:

  • 3-Socket — 1 current world record

ThinkSystem SR655:

  • 1-Socket  1 current world record

About this benchmark: The SPECompG 2012 benchmark is designed for measuring performance using applications based on the OpenMP 3.1 standard for shared-memory parallel processing. The benchmark includes 14 scientific and engineering application codes, covering everything from computational fluid dynamics (CFD) to molecular modeling to image manipulation.

Why it matters: If you are running scientific or engineering applications, a leadership benchmark score means this system is the highest performing server in the industry for these workloads.

SPECmpiM 2007

The 7 ThinkSystem world record results on the SPECmpiM 2007 benchmark include:

Performance

ThinkSystem SR950:

  • 8-Socket (1-node) 1 current world record
  • 6-Socket (1-node) 1 current world record
  • 3-Socket (1-node) 1 current world record

ThinkSystem SR650:

  • 2-Socket (6-node) 1 current world record
  • 2-Socket (5-node) 1 current world record
  • 2-Socket (3-node) 1 current world record

ThinkSystem SR655:

  • 1-Socket (1 node) 1 current world record

About this benchmark: The SPECmpiM 2007 benchmark suite is used to evaluate MPI-parallel, floating point, compute-intensive performance across a wide range of cluster and SMP hardware. This suite gives users the most objective and representative benchmark suite for measuring and comparing high-performance computer systems.

Why it matters: If you are running compute intensive technical workloads, a leadership benchmark score means this server is the highest performing server in the industry, measuring the CPUs, MPI library, communication interconnect, memory architecture, compilers, and file system performance.

SPEC ACCEL

The 5 ThinkSystem world record results on the SPEC ACCEL benchmark include:

Performance

ThinkSystem SR650:

  • 2-Socket/1-Node (2S/1N) 2 current world records

ThinkSystem SR655:

  • 1-Socket/1-Node (1S/1N) 3 current world records

About this benchmark: The SPEC ACCEL benchmark suite tests performance with computationally intensive parallel applications running under the OpenCL, OpenACC, and OpenMP 4 target offloading APIs. The suite exercises the performance of the accelerator, host CPU, memory transfer between host and accelerator, support libraries and drivers, and compilers.

Why it matters: If you are running servers with accelerators (GPUs, coprocessors), a #1 benchmark score means a solution incorporating this server, a specific accelerator, and supporting software is the highest performing solution in the industry for its size.

About the ThinkSystem Servers Tested

Intel Architecture

ThinkSystem SR950

The powerful flagship 4U ThinkSystem SR950 is designed for your most demanding, mission-critical workloads. It can grow from two to eight second-generation Intel Xeon Scalable Family processors and from 24 to 96 DIMM slots. The modular design of SR950 slashes the time needed for upgrades and servicing via easy front or rear access to all major subsystems and extensive use of hot-swap components.

The SR950 packs numerous fault-tolerant and high-availability features into a high-density design. The SR950 offers enterprise scalability and advanced RAS features to support the most demanding mission-critical applications that require 24x7 operation. The 4U rack-optimized design also reduces the space needed to support massive network computing operations.

Suggested uses: In-memory databases, large transactional databases, batch and real-time analytics, ERP, CRM, and virtualized server workloads.


Figure 1. ThinkSystem SR950 server

The SR950 offers numerous features to boost performance, improve scalability and reduce costs:

  • Supports up to 8 Gold or Platinum processors with up to 28 cores, up to 3.8GHz, and up to 205W TDP.
  • Up to 96 TruDDR4 memory DIMMs operating at up to 2933 MHz, and memory capacity of up to 24 TB using 256 GB 3DS RDIMMs, provide maximum performance for memory-intensive applications without having to replace the server enclosure or upgrade to a physically larger box.
  • Up to 24x 2.5-inch drive bays, in various combinations of SAS/SATA HDDs, SAS/SATA SSDs, and NVMe PCIe SSDs (up to 12x), provide a flexible and scalable all-in-one platform. NVMe PCIe SSD support maximizes drive throughput, bandwidth, and latency.
  • Up to 17 rear-accessible PCIe slots: 14 general-purpose PCIe 3.0 slots plus dedicated slots for the LOM adapter and 2x ML2 adapters, plus 2x internal slots for RAID or HBA adapters, provide extreme I/O support.

For more information, refer to the SR950 Product Guide (Gen 2).

ThinkSystem SR860

 Designed specifically for select geographic markets*, the 4-socket ThinkSystem SR860 features a streamlined 2U rack design, optimized for price and performance, with best-in-class flexibility and expandability. The server now supports second-generation Intel Xeon Scalable Family processors. Built for standard workloads like general business applications and server consolidation, it can also accommodate high-growth areas such as databases and virtualization. The agile design of the SR860 permits rapid upgrades for processors and memory, and its large, flexible storage capacity helps to keep pace with data growth.

Suggested uses: General business consolidation, data analytics, virtualization, database, dense computing and scientific applications.

Lenovo ThinkSystem SR860*
Figure 2. ThinkSystem SR860 server

The SR860 offers numerous features to boost performance, improve scalability and reduce costs:

  • Supports Gold or Platinum processors with up to 28 cores, up to 3.8GHz, and up to 205W TDP. Two processors and 24 DIMM sockets come standard, upgradable to 4 processors and 48 DIMM sockets internally, for maximum flexibility and lower initial cost.
  • Up to 48 TruDDR4 memory DIMMs operating at up to 2933 MHz, and memory capacity of up to 6 TB using 128 GB 3DS RDIMMs, provide maximum performance for memory-intensive applications.
  • Up to 16x 2.5-inch drives (SAS or SATA HDDs, SAS or SATA SSDs, and 8x NVMe 2.5-inch PCIe SSDs) provide a flexible and scalable all-in-one platform. NVMe PCIe SSD support maximizes drive throughput, bandwidth, and latency.

* The ThinkSystem SR860 is available only in select countries in Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA), and in China.

For more information, refer to the SR860 Product Guide (Gen 2).

ThinkSystem SR850

The streamlined ThinkSystem SR850 mission-critical server packs 4 sockets in a 2U chassis and is optimized for price and performance, as well as best-in-class expandability. The server now supports second-generation Intel Xeon Scalable Family processors.

Built for standard workloads like general business applications and server consolidation, it can also accommodate high-growth areas such as databases and virtualization. The agile design of the SR850 permits rapid upgrades for processors and memory, and its large, flexible storage capacity helps to keep pace with data growth.

Suggested uses: General business consolidation, data analytics, virtualization, database, dense computing, and scientific applications.

Lenovo ThinkSystem SR850
Figure 3. ThinkSystem SR850 server

The SR850 offers numerous features to boost performance, improve scalability and reduce costs:

  • Supports Gold or Platinum processors with up to 28 cores, up to 3.8GHz, and up to 205W TDP. Two processors and 24 DIMM sockets come standard, upgradable to 4 processors and 48 DIMM sockets internally, for maximum flexibility and lower initial cost.
  • Up to 48 TruDDR4 memory DIMMs operating at up to 2933 MHz, and memory capacity of up to 6 TB using 128 GB 3DS RDIMMs, provide maximum performance for memory-intensive applications.
  • Up to 16x 2.5-inch drives (SAS or SATA HDDs, SAS or SATA SSDs, and 8x NVMe 2.5-inch PCIe SSDs) provide a flexible and scalable all-in-one platform. NVMe PCIe SSD support maximizes drive throughput, bandwidth, and latency.

For more information, refer to the SR850 Product Guide (Gen 2).

ThinkSystem SR650

For medium-to-large enterprises, and managed and cloud service providers, the Lenovo ThinkSystem SR650 rack server is the optimum 2U, 2-socket server—the most widely used server type worldwide. It’s engineered to deliver high performance with 205W CPUs, low-latency NVMe drives, and high-power GPUs. The SR650 offers broad scalability and advanced RAS features to support your most demanding mainstream applications.

Suggested uses: Large databases, virtualization and cloud computing, virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI), enterprise applications, collaboration/email, and business analytics and big data.


Figure 4. ThinkSystem SR650 Server

Contributing to Lenovo’s long history of reliability, the highly flexible and configurable SR650 is the ideal platform for hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI) or software-defined storage (SDS). It provides a solid foundation for:

  • Transforming physical resources into services, using validated designs for hybrid cloud
  • Performing analytics on streaming data, using validated designs for Big Data
  • Increasing productivity of virtualized transactional systems, using validated designs for OLTP databases.

The SR650 offers numerous features to boost performance, improve scalability and reduce costs:

  • Supports 2 Gold or Platinum processors with up to 28 cores, up to 3.8GHz, and up to 205W TDP.
  • Up to 12 TruDDR4 memory DIMMs operating at up to 2933 MHz, and memory capacity of up to 3 TB using 128 GB 3DS RDIMMs, provide maximum performance for memory-intensive applications.
  • Up to 24x 2.5-inch drives + 2x 3.5 drives, OR up to 10x 3.5" drives. in various combinations of SAS/SATA HDDs, SAS/SATA SSDs, and NVMe PCIe SSDs, provide a flexible and scalable all-in-one platform. NVMe PCIe SSD support maximizes drive throughput, bandwidth, and latency.

For more information, refer to the SR650 Product Guide (Gen 2).

ThinkSystem SN850

The 4-socket ThinkSystem SN850 is optimized for high-end virtualization, mainstream database deployments, and memory-intensive, high-performance environments. The blade server now supports second-generation Intel Xeon Processor Scalable Family processors. The SN850 is a high-performance server that offers enhanced security, efficiency, and reliability features to handle business-critical workloads.

Suggested uses: Large database, virtualization, enterprise applications, HPC, and cloud applications


Figure 5. ThinkSystem SN850 server

The SN850 offers the following features to boost performance, improve scalability, and reduce costs:

  • Up to 7 SN850 servers can be installed in one Flex System Enterprise chassis
  • Supports up to 4 Gold or Platinum processors with up to 28 cores each, up to 3.8GHz, and up to 165W TDP.
  • Up to 24 TruDDR4 memory DIMMs operating at up to 2933 MHz, and memory capacity of up to 6 TB using 128 GB 3DS RDIMMs, provide maximum performance for memory-intensive applications.
  • Four adapter slots, including support for up to 40 Gb Ethernet, 16 Gb Fibre Channel, and FDR InfiniBand controllers for maximum communications flexibility.

For more information, refer to the SN850 Product Guide (Gen 2).

ThinkSystem SN550

The ThinkSystem SN550 is a high-performance server that offers enhanced security, efficiency, and reliability features to handle business-critical workloads. The blade server now supports the second-generation Intel Xeon Processor Scalable Family of processors.


Figure 6. ThinkSystem SN550 server

Suggested uses: database, virtualization, enterprise applications, collaboration and email, streaming media, Web, HPC, and cloud applications

The SN550 offers the following features to boost performance, improve scalability, and reduce costs:

  • Up to 14x SN550 servers can be installed in one Flex System Enterprise chassis
  • Supports up to 2 Gold or Platinum processors with up to 28x cores each, up to 3.8GHz, and up to 165W TDP.
  • Up to 12x TruDDR4 memory DIMMs operating at up to 2933 MHz, and memory capacity of up to 3 TB using 128 GB 3DS RDIMMs, provide maximum performance for memory-intensive applications.
  • Two adapter slots, including support for up to 40 Gb Ethernet, 16 Gb Fibre Channel, and FDR InfiniBand controllers for maximum communications flexibility.

For more information, refer to the SN550 Product Guide (Gen 2).

ThinkSystem SD530

The 2-socket ThinkSystem SD530 is an economical ultradense server in a 0.5U rack form factor. With four SD530 server nodes installed in the 2U ThinkSystem D2 enclosure, and the ability to cable and manage up to four D2 enclosures (16 servers) as one asset, you have an ideal high-density 2U four-node (2U/4N) platform for enterprise and cloud workloads. The SD530 now supports second-generation Intel Xeon Scalable Family processors and provides high density and scalability, as well as cost optimization.

Suggested use: Cloud, MSP, CSP, HPC, hyperconverged solutions, branch office or remote office needs

The following figure shows four ThinkSystem SD530 servers installed in a D2 Enclosure.

Four ThinkSystem SD530 servers installed in a D2 Enclosure

Figure 7. ThinkSystem SD530 server and D2 Enclosure

The SD530 server and the enclosures (D2 and Modular) offer numerous features to boost performance, improve scalability, and reduce costs:

  • Up to four nodes in a single 2U enclosure, each with up to two processors (Bronze through Platinum), core speeds up to 3.8 GHz, and TDP ratings up to 205W.
  • Up to 16 DIMMs/1 TB (using 16x 64 GB RDIMMs), 6 drive bays (up to 46 TB max), and 2 PCIe slots per node.
  • Up to two GPUs per node, with the addition of a 1U GPU Tray, for increased processing power.

For more information, refer to the SD530 Product Guide (Gen 2).

Optane DC Persistent Memory

The ThinkSystem servers that support second-generation Intel Xeon Scalable Family processors also supports a new, flexible tier of memory designed specifically for data center workloads. Optane DC Persistent Memory offers an unprecedented combination of high-capacity, affordability, and persistence. This technology has a significant impact on real-world data center operations: restart times reduced from minutes to seconds, 20% greater virtual machine density, dramatically improved data replication with 14x lower latency and 14x higher IOPS, and greater security for persistent data.

For more information

For more information about these systems, see the Optane DC Persistent Memory Product Guide.

AMD Architecture

Compared to the previous processor generations, ThinkSystem servers with AMD architecture deliver up to 2X performance and 4X floating point capability, providing faster data transfer and analytics without sacrificing memory capacity or I/O with PCIe 4.0 support and faster memory speeds up to 3200 MHz.

ThinkSystem SR655

The ThinkSystem SR655 with the next generation AMD EPYC architecture delivers outstanding TCO for virtualization, big data, analytics, and scale up software defined deployments. It offers 2-socket performance in a 2U, 1-socket design, featuring higher core and storage density, increased I/O throughput with less latency, and built-in system security.

Suggested uses: AI Inference, VDI, OLTP, Analytics, software-defined storage


Figure 8. ThinkSystem SR655

With the enterprise class AMD EPYC 7002 Generation processor, the world’s first 7nm data center CPU, the SR655 features up to an unprecedented 64 cores with 128 PCIe 4.0 lanes in a single socket to reduce bottlenecks and increase server utilization.

Key features of the SR655 include:

  • Multi-GPU optimized rack server, providing support for up to 6 single-wide GPUs that offer more workload acceleration in AI Inference and virtualized desktop infrastructure (VDI).
  • 64 cores to handle heavy-lift virtualization workloads; provides cutting edge application efficiency in health care applications such as EMR, PACS, and medical imaging or electronic trading platforms for financial services applications.
  • Support for up to 32 NVMe solid-state drives, when paired with high speed networking, make the system an excellent choice for workloads that need large amounts of low-latency high-bandwidth storage, including virtualized clustered SAN solutions, software-defined storage (SDS), and applications that use NVMe over fabrics.

For more information, refer to the SR655 Product Guide.

ThinkSystem SR635

The Lenovo ThinkSystem SR635 is ideal for I/O intensive workloads, from databases and analytics to virtualized environments (VDI) and hybrid cloud solutions. This 1U 1-socket rack server is right-sized to offer the balanced processor power, performance, memory, and I/O of a 2-socket server at the value and total cost of ownership of a 1-socket server.

Suggested uses: AI Inference, VDI, OLTP, Analytics, HPC, software-defined storage

Figure 9. ThinkSystem SR635

Key features of the SR635 include:

  • High capacity storage, with support for up to 16x 2.5inch drives. When the server is outfitted with 16 low-latency NVMe drives, it is an ideal platform for OLTP, analytics, software-defined and HPC storage.
  • Up to three single-wide GPUs, which provide workload acceleration for AI inference and VDI applications.
  • Full support for PCIe 4.0 to achieve up to 16 GT/s for accelerated data transfer speeds. This new technology enables the next-generation of technology for grid computing and high-frequency trading analytics in the financial services sector, and capacity planning and supply chain optimization in both the telco and manufacturing industries.

For more information, refer to the SR635 Product Guide.

Lenovo XClarity Controller and Lenovo XClarity Administrator

Lenovo XClarity Controller is an all-new hardware embedded management engine included in most ThinkSystem servers. XClarity Controller features an uncluttered graphical user interface, industry standard Redfish-compliant REST APIs, and enables booting in half the time of prior generation servers, with up to 6x faster firmware updates.

Lenovo XClarity Administrator is a centralized resource-management solution designed to reduce complexity, speed response, and enhance the availability of Lenovo ThinkSystem and ThinkAgile solutions.

XClarity Administrator enables you to define and control pools of infrastructure from your choice of interface, including an intuitive web-based GUI, XClarity Mobile app, Windows PowerShell, Python. You can also use your own external IT applications by running XClarity Integrator software or integrating with open REST APIs.

Conclusion

The portfolio of Lenovo ThinkSystem servers continues its dominance of data center performance, with 155 world record benchmarks (as of January 1, 2020). This outstanding performance was achieved across multiple configurations and a variety of workloads and industry benchmarks.

Performance Benchmark Reports

Each ThinkSystem benchmark has a Lenovo Performance Benchmark Report. These Performance Benchmark Reports detail the specific benchmark, benchmark result, and hardware/software configuration used for that benchmark result. The reports also provide a link to the specific benchmark results page (e.g., SPEC, TPC, SAP, etc.). View all Performance Benchmark Reports.

About the Authors

Randall Lundin is the Mission Critical Product Manager in the Lenovo Data Center Group. He is responsible for managing and planning Lenovo’s 4-socket and 8-socket servers. Randall has also authored and contributed to numerous Lenovo Press publications in the Mission Critical space.

Mark T. Chapman is the Senior Technical Writer/Editor for the Lenovo Data Center Group Marketing Communications organization. He has more than 40 years experience in the industry and has written numerous papers and books about servers, operating systems, and other IT and non-IT topics.

Trademarks

Lenovo and the Lenovo logo are trademarks or registered trademarks of Lenovo in the United States, other countries, or both. A current list of Lenovo trademarks is available on the Web at https://www.lenovo.com/us/en/legal/copytrade/.

The following terms are trademarks of Lenovo in the United States, other countries, or both:
Flex System
Lenovo®
ThinkAgile
ThinkSystem
TruDDR4
XClarity®

The following terms are trademarks of other companies:

Intel®, Optane™, and Xeon® are trademarks or registered trademarks of Intel Corporation or its subsidiaries in the United States and other countries.

Linux® is a trademark of Linus Torvalds in the United States, other countries, or both.

PowerShell, Windows PowerShell®, and Windows® are trademarks of Microsoft Corporation in the United States, other countries, or both.

TPC and TPC-E are trademarks of Transaction Processing Performance Council.

SPEC®, SPEC ACCEL®, SPEC CPU®, SPECjbb®, SPEC OMP®, SPEC Power®, SPECpower_ssj®, SPEC VIRT®, and SPEC VIRT_SC® are trademarks of the Standard Performance Evaluation Corporation (SPEC).

Other company, product, or service names may be trademarks or service marks of others.