AMD Announces 96Boards Enterprise Edition Server Board Powered by Opteron A1100 Processor

When Linaro announced the 96Boards initiative, they started by launching “Consumer Edition” boards with a target price of around $100, but they also had plans to launch more powerful and feature-packed “Enterprise Edition” board in the $300 to $400 range. The first Enterprise Edition is based on AMD Opteron A1100 quad core Cortex A57 processor.

AMD 96Boards (Click to Enlarge) - Source:
AMD 96Boards (Click to Enlarge) – Source: ARM Community

The company has not released the full specs yet, but the press release mentions the board features a 4-core AMD Opteron A1100 Series processor with two SO-DIMM memory slots, PCIe, USB, SATA (3x), and Gigabit Ethernet capabilities. It measures 160×120 mm.

CentOS, Fedora, and Red Hat Enterprise Linux Server for ARM Development Preview are the main operating systems planned for the board but additional software and operating systems will be available later on.

The board is should become available in H2 2015, and will be supported through the Linaro Enterprise Group’s site. Exact price has not been announced, bu it should be much cheaper than the $3,000 Opteron A1100 development kit launched about a year ago.

Via miniNodes

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19 Replies to “AMD Announces 96Boards Enterprise Edition Server Board Powered by Opteron A1100 Processor”

  1. Aaaah… If they do release at that price-point for things, I’ll be interested in one…

  2. You should change “Red Hat Enterprise Linux Server” to “Red Hat Enterprise Linux Server for ARM Developer Preview” (RHELSA DP). There is no RHEL version, which supports AArch64 yet. Red Hat publicly announced RHELSA DP 7.1 in Red Hat Summit just few days ago. You have to be part of RH PEAP to get access. It’s what Jon Masters showed in Linaro Connect on APM Mustang quite some time ago.

    Fedora has a very decent AArch64 support (I love it). CentOS started porting efforts quite recently (few months ago) after they received APM Mustang from APM IIRC.

    I guess, this silicon will support CRC and CRYPTO extensions. I recall Crypto extensions being mentioned on AMD slides. E.g., X-Gene1 does not support CRC and CRYPTO. This kind of things could also influence your decision when selecting silicon.

    X-Gene 2 adds CRC IIRC. Thunder X and Exynos M1 all versions supports CRC and CRYPTO.

  3. @davidlt
    Thanks for the explanation. “for ARM developer preview” was actually in the PR, but I did not think it made a difference. Now I understand, and I’ve updated the post.

    I’ve also seen your email about the board this evening. Messages sent through the contact form always go to the spam folder first…

  4. Well the board is nice but we have to see if the price will be nice too… if it’s too expensive then I’ll just wait for some Chinese 64bit SOC boards. Sure they’ll lack many of the things this board has but they’ll likely be around $100.

  5. @Marius Cirsta
    It that case you are probably interested in 96Boards CE boards. EE boards pack server-grade SOCs, lots of RAM, Gigabit Ethernet, PCIe, SATA, etc. All of that up to 400 USD. Cheap comparing that other development kits are usually 3000 USD, or way more expensive (depends on what you want to acquire). I don’t think they are making any or significant profit with 96Boards, but it’s about enabling the community further.

    Nice thing about 96Boards is that support must be upstream. That’s a requirement to carry 96Boards branding. That alone could be one of the biggest selling points.

    IIRC, Snapdragon 96Board is 75 USD.

  6. @davidlt
    What puts me off the hikeyboard and dragonboard is they only have 1GB of ram. Is it unreasonable to expect at least 4GB of ram and prefferablly more in a 64-bit system?

  7. @davidlt
    Well what I need is 2 GB of RAM and some decent CPU power ( > 4 A53 ) , SATA would also be nice to have but for the rest I don’t care that much so $400 seems a bit much… let’s see what they come up with though.

    My main complain is that for now they seem to be doing very weak stuff with the 96Boards and for some reason decided 1GB of RAM and 4 low power A53s are good enough … I need more than that but less than what this AMD board offers.

  8. If the price is up to $400, it’s acceptable, if it’s lower in a range $200-$300, then this is even better. I’m looking forward this board or updated AMCC.

  9. I’d say, $400 do not seem acceptable at all for this board. As I understand it, this board is meant for servers and its main advantage over cheaper solutions is ECC memory support. Why would people not just buy a cheaper Avoton board for the same purpose? The mere existence of ridiculously priced boards (that cost, say, $1000 or more) does not make a $400 board cheap from any objective perspective.

  10. @Peter Green
    Agreed, I have the same feelings. Currently 96Boards CE are with low-end SOCs and most likely memory is PoP in these. This should keep the price lower. 3GB is currently becoming mainstream in high-end SoCs, but 4GB is somewhat rare. I guess 4GB will be become mainstream in 1-2 year timeframe. I wouldn’t have high hopes, but you never know. SOCs with 4GB would be very welcomed.

    @Marius Cirsta
    It’s up to the companies to release 96Boards CE. Seems that there will be low-end and high-end boards now, but still missing middle-end (based high-end mobile SOC). Everyone has their target. E.g., I cannot compile software efficiency without 1GB/core, 2GB/core at minimum to execute something useful, and 4GB/core makes it ideal for running our software.

    Let’s see what the price tag will be.

  11. @cnxsoft
    They’ve got 5 business days to have it ‘available in Q3 2015’. I think it’s safe to say that this release advice – in keeping with all the other dates AMD has given about their ARM64 products – will prove to be incorrect. Any chance of getting a better release/availability timeframe?

  12. the pictures says “Coming in Q4”

    i really like this husky board :
    – sata port + on board power connector,
    – so dimm slot,
    – ethernet port.

    Too bad those features are missing in 96boards CE specs.

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