The Next Leap in Software Defined Infrastructure


For today’s enterprises, competitiveness increasingly hinges on IT agility. In simple terms, a digitally driven business—which is now virtually all businesses—can move no faster than its IT infrastructure. This new reality for the enterprise is accelerating the shift to public, private, and hybrid clouds enabled by software defined infrastructure (SDI).

At this point, things get trickier. While the move to cloud is inevitable, the road to this new future for IT isn’t necessarily an easy one. Enterprises deploying private and hybrid clouds often wrestle with fragmented solution stacks, a lack of key features, and complex deployment models.

At Intel, we long ago recognized both the oncoming shift to cloud models and the significant obstacles that blocked the road ahead. With these thoughts in mind, we launched our Intel Cloud for All initiative and our recently updated Intel Cloud Builders program. Through these efforts, Intel works actively with industry leaders and a broad ecosystem to bring feature-rich, easy-to-deploy cloud solutions to market—solutions that make private clouds accessible to a wide range of organizations.

In addition, many years ago we put the wheels in motion to deliver the platforms that would power a new generation of data centers. That’s the case with the Intel Xeon processor E5-2600 v4 product family, which is used by organizations around the world as the foundation for agile IT infrastructure in both cloud and traditional data centers.

Today, this widely trusted platform is a taking another leap forward with the launch of the Intel Xeon processor E5-2600 v4 product family. These powerful new processors offer unparalleled versatility for diverse data center workloads. They are designed expressly for next-generation data centers running on SDI, and they are supercharged for efficiency, performance, and agility across cloud-native and traditional applications.

The Intel Xeon processor E5-2600 v4 product family includes innovative technologies built into the silicon to optimize performance based on workload demands. One of the more exciting features of this new processor family is called Intel Resource Director Technology (Intel RDT). This powerful tool provides embedded orchestration and automation capabilities to help data center operators better manage shared platform resources, such as L3 cache and system memory, dynamically across compute, networking, and storage.

Intel RDT makes the Intel Xeon processor E5-2600 v4 product family ideal for environments where automation and orchestration capabilities hold the keys to efficient resource utilization, service tiering, and optimal quality-of-service (QoS) levels. In one of its more notable capabilities, Intel RDT enables preferential allocation of resources based on the priority of workloads. This capability helps data center operators ensure that the applications that are most critical to the business get the resources they need to maintain optimal performance and meet service-level agreements.

The advances don’t stop there. For increased performance, the new Intel Xeon processor delivers a higher core count, enhanced virtualization capabilities, and higher memory bandwidth. The new virtualization features can speed up the time it takes for applications enter and exit the virtualization layer improving performance.  And to further accelerate data center applications while improving efficiency, this latest generation of the Intel Xeon family supports a fully featured line of NVMe (NVM Express) solid-state drives (SSDs) including Intel’s first 3D NAND product in flexible form factors and various capacities which offer higher performance than SAS or SATA based SSDs.

The Intel Xeon processor E5-2600 v4 product family also offers important security enhancements that build on Intel’s end-to-end hardware-assisted platform security. Accelerated cryptographic performance enables encrypted data to move faster over secure connections, while improved security keys safeguard network access and deepen platform protection by improving the defense of memory and the CPU from stealthy malware attacks.

I’m happy to report that many cloud-focused organizations are already taking advantage of the features of the Intel Xeon processor E5-2600 v4 product family. These early adopters include some of the world’s leading digital services and cloud companies, along with leading research universities and cloud-savvy companies.

A few examples:

  • eBay is capitalizing on the capabilities of the Intel Xeon E5-2600 v4 product family to achieve large performance and efficiency gains through a customized high-TDP liquid-cooled CPU. "Our search servers achieved an increase of 70% in throughput (QPS – queries per second) with the new Intel Xeon processor E5 v4 versus the previous generation Intel Xeon processor E5 v3. We are looking forward to our continued datacenter innovations and collaboration with Intel.” Nick Whyte – Vice President, Fellow Search Technology, eBay (1)
  • Netflix is leveraging the new Intel platform to realize substantial performance increases for encrypted streaming.  Netflix’s talented engineers optimized software allowing them to boost throughput from 26Gbps to 55Gbps on Intel® Xeon processor E5 v3 and has already further boosted to 64 Gbps with a combinations of the new Intel Xeon Processor E5 v4, AES-NI instructions, the Intel ISA-L (Intel Storage Acceleration Library), and Cache Allocation technology (CAT), Netflix can deliver even more throughput, serving more than 60,000 encrypted streams per node from their CDN.  (2)
  • Joyent is using the advanced security features of the Intel Xeon E5-2600 v4 product family to help its customers protect data in multi-tenant cloud container environments. “In a container-centric world, microprocessor security features serve to not just secure the system, but to allow for the high levels of performance and tenancy realized by running containers natively, on bare metal.  We are therefore happy to announce that we at Joyent have extended our SmartOS container hypervisor to use the Supervisor Mode Access Protection (SMAP) found in the Xeon E5 v4 processor.”  Bryan Cantrill, CTO (Joyent)
  • Working with Intel Labs, China Mobile has seen great results eliminating noisy neighbor problems on network edge computing application using Intel Resource Director Technology. “I would like to highlight the importance of Intel Resource Director Technology for NFV as well as 5G. China Mobile, having extended NFV scope to include C-RAN, is a great example. Working with Intel Labs using RDT in C-RAN, China Mobile has seen great results eliminating noisy neighbor problems, reducing the system response time, thus enabling efficient co-deployment of protocol stack and general MEC. That is a great progress for operators.”-  Dr. Chih-Lin I, Chief Scientist, China Mobile Research Institute.

Clearly, organizations like these recognize that the digital services of tomorrow will require modern, software-defined data centers optimized for agility, operational efficiency, and scale on demand. And I think it’s safe to say they also recognize that the Intel Xeon processor E5-2600 v4 product family is designed with these needs in mind.

For a closer look at the capabilities of the Intel Xeon processor E5-2600 v4 product family, visit If you have any questions or comments don’t hesitate to ask me on Twitter @jenhuffstetler.

(1) Software and workloads used in performance tests may have been optimized for performance only on Intel microprocessors. Performance tests, such as SYSmark and MobileMark, are measured using specific computer systems, components, software, operations and functions. Any change to any of those factors may cause the results to vary. You should consult other information and performance tests to assist you in fully evaluating your contemplated purchases, including the performance of that product when combined with other products. For more complete information visit

(2) Up to 32% reduction in TCO $/QPS (queries per second) based eBay’s Marketplace search application when comparing Intel® Xeon® processor E5-2679 v4 SKU with Intel Xeon Processor E5-2680 v3 SKU (testing by customer)

(3)  up to 2.5X throughput claim based on Netflix’s streaming & encrypted content delivery application (customer tested) with out of the box performance of 26Gbps using OpenSSL Xeon Processor E5 v3 2697 compared to using ISA-L library, Cache Allocation Technology, Intel Xeon Processor E5 v4 2697A achieving 64 Gbps