Cookie policy: This site uses cookies (small files stored on your computer) to simplify and improve your experience of this website. Cookies are small text files stored on the device you are using to access this website. For more information on how we use and manage cookies please take a look at our privacy and cookie policies. Some parts of the site may not work properly if you choose not to accept cookies.


Donatelli: Moonshot is biggest server invention in decade

  • Print
  • Share
  • Comment
  • Save

Dave Donatelli is really into Project Moonshot. The head of HP division that makes hardware for data centers said in his HP Discover keynote Wednesday that the company's line of microservers was “game-changing.”


Moonshot, he said, was “the most important server invention … made in a decade.” It is so important because, by HP's estimates, about 10m servers will be added in data centers around the world in the next three years, and it would take too much power and data center space to make them traditional rack servers.


While “we'll sell x86 servers for years and years and years,” Donatelli said, there is also huge need for something different. “You have to reinvent what a server is and what a server can do.”


Moonshot is HP's answer to that need: a tiny low-power server node optimized for whatever application it is running.


“We will build all kinds of different cartridges for all kinds of different applications,” Donatelli said. “That's what we call software-defined server.”


The vendor has Moonshot cards for x86 chips, it has them for ARM, and it has a single card that supports both. Moonshot cartridges have been designed to support x86 and GPUs (Graphics Processing Units), Texas Instruments chips and DSP (chips inside television sets).


A 64-bit ARM cartridge is in the works.


“It's all about matching the server to your application to get you the best combination of power, performance and cost. This was an innovation we've been working on for more than 10 years at HP Labs, and again, we think this is a revolution.”


Some of the customers already using Moonshot servers include PayPall, LeaseWeb, Savvis, Purdue University and HP itself. Meg Whitman, HP president and CEO, announced in her keynote Tuesday that all of had been moved to Moonshot servers.


“We are now powering the entire site on the equivalent of 12 60-watt light bulbs,” she said.


The idea of matching hardware to the application is something big internet companies like Google, Facebook and Microsoft have been doing themselves. These companies have designed their own servers and went directly to manufacturers in Asia to get them built, since the traditional vendors (HP included) had been competing in designing middle-ground servers that were trying to be everything to everyone.


In addition to specs driven by the application, Moonshot is about high density. A single enclosure currently holds 45 cartridges, and ten such enclosures can be installed in a single rack.


These would use 90% less power than HP's DL380 servers delivering the same computing performance would use. This capacity would also be in one rack instead of nine and cost 77% less.

Related images

  • Dave Donatelli, executive VP and general manager of HP's enterprise-hardware business, speaking at HP Discover 2013

Have your say

Please view our terms and conditions before submitting your comment.

  • Print
  • Share
  • Comment
  • Save


  • Overhead Power Distribution – Best Practice in Modular Design

    Tue, 10 Nov 2015 16:00:00

    Overhead power distribution in your data center offers many attractive possibilities but is not without its challenges. Join UE Corp’s Director of Marketing, Mark Swift, and CPI’s Senior Data Center Consultant, Steve Bornfield, for an exploration of the options and some of the pitfalls, supported by real-life examples from the field.

  • Overcoming the Challenges of High Power Density Deployments

    Wed, 4 Nov 2015 19:00:00

    Increasing rack power densities saves space and energy, and improves both OPEX and CAPEX. But it can also create unintended problems that could bring your data center to a screeching halt. Join Raritan’s VP of Products & Marketing, Henry Hsu, and DCD’s Head of Research, Kevin Restivo, as they reveal the three key challenges in deploying a high density cabinet, and explain how to: reduce operating costs, Increase up-time , Improve mean time to repair, become more energy-efficient manage existing capacity and plan for growth.

  • Squeezing the Lemon - The Power to do More with Less

    Tue, 20 Oct 2015 08:00:00

    Energy costs rising, manpower resources falling – managing a data center is getting more stressful by the day. One cold night could be all it takes to tip your power supply over the edge. And let's not forget the never-ending demands from IT for additional space. More information on its own is not the answer. Join Rittal's webinar to understand how to: • Lower your power consumption and OPEX charges, with 'smart' power distribution • Identify issues before they become problems, with intelligent PDUs' monitoring capabilities • Expand your DC as your business grows, with modular PDUs • Profile your power requirements to help you plan and make better-informed decisions REGISTER NOW Note: All attendees will receive a free copy of the latest White Paper from Rittal.

  • Live Customer Roundtable: Optimizing Capacity (12:00 EST)

    Tue, 8 Sep 2015 16:00:00

    The biggest challenge facing many data centers today? Capacity. How to optimize what you have today. And when you need to expand, how to expand your capacity smarter. Learn from the experts about how Data Center Infrastructure Management (DCIM) and Prefabricated Modular Data Centers are driving best practices in how capacity is managed and optimized: - lower costs - improved efficiencies and performance - better IT services delivered to the business - accurate long-range planning Don;t miss out on our LIVE customer roundtable and your chance to pose questions to expert speakers from Commscope, VIRTUS and University of Montana. These enterprises are putting best practices to work today in the only place that counts – the real world.

  • Power Optimization – Can Your Business Survive an Unplanned Outage? (APAC)

    Wed, 26 Aug 2015 05:00:00

    Most outages are accidental; by adopting an intelligent power chain, you can help mitigate them and reduce your mean-time to repair. Join Anixter and DatacenterDynamics for a webinar on the five best practices and measurement techniques to help you obtain the performance data you need to optimize your power chain. Register today!

More link