Apple Nehalem-Based Servers Now at Resellers

By Jessica Davis  |  Print this article Print

Pushing the message of energy efficiency in performance per watt, Apple has released updated Xserve workgroup servers based on Intel’s Nehalem Xeon 5500 processor. Xserve starts at a price of $2,999 and is available now through Apple resellers and the Apple Store.

Claiming an 89 percent improvement in performance per watt, Apple today announced immediate availability of its updated Xserve server that uses Intel’s Nehalem Xeon 5500 processor. It’s a message that Apple hopes will resonate with customers in education, business and creative services, where Apple is targeting the workgroup server. 

Resellers contacted by Channel Insider say that the education market remains one of the strong verticals in 2009 so far.

The new Nehalem-based Apple Xserve is available through authorized Apple resellers and through the Apple Store. The price for the Xserve starts at $2,999, which includes an unlimited-client license for Mac OS Xserver Version 10.5 Leopard that provides support for Mac, Linux and Windows clients without the added cost of client licenses, according to Apple.

"With up to twice the performance, better power efficiency and an innovative SSD (solid state drive) option, this is the best Xserve we’ve ever made," says David Moody, Apple’s vice president of worldwide Mac product marketing, in a prepared formal statement issued by the company.

Performance per watt marks one of the major features Nehalem delivers, according to Intel, which launched the server or Xeon version of its Nehalem processor last week amid support announcements from other server manufacturers such as HP, Dell and IBM. 

Apple’s 1U rack-optimized Xserve is available with up to two 2.93GHz Intel Xeon processors and storage options that include the low-power SSD. Each Xeon processor comes with an integrated memory controller with three channels of 1,066MHz DDR3 ECC memory, which Apple says delivers up to 2.4 times the memory bandwidth while cutting memory latency up to 49 percent.  In addition, the use of high-efficiency power supplies and intelligent thermal management enables Xserve to deliver a 19 percent reduction in idle power use, Apple says.

Xserve’s storage includes a 128GB SSD boot-drive option. In addition, Xserve offers three 3.5-inch drive bays that support both 7,200-rpm SATA and 15,000-rpm SAS drives and can be configured with up to 3TB of internal storage, according to Apple. The new Xserve also offers two PCI Express 2.0 x16 expansion slots. In addition, a 72-hour backup battery is included for enhanced data protection.

On the software side, Leopard Server includes Podcast Producer, Wiki Server and iCal Server, a commercial CalDAV standard-based calendar server, Apple says. Also, Leopard Server is fully Unix-compliant and provides LDAP and Active Directory support.

Xserve also offers dual Gigabit Ethernet on-board, Server Monitor Software, and two FireWire 800 and three USB 2.0 ports

Apple says it is also offering build-to-order options and accessories for Xserve including dual 2.26GHz, 2.66GHz or 2.93GHz Intel Xeon processors; 160GB and 1TB 7,200-rpm SATA Apple Drive Modules; 450GB 15,000-rpm SAS drives (third-party option); an internal Xserve RAID card; Gigabit Ethernet; 4GB Fibre Channel cards; and a 750W redundant power supply.



Jessica Davis covers the channel for eWeek and Channel Insider. Her technology journalism career began well before anyone heard of the World Wide Web and has included stints at Infoworld, Electronic News/EDN, and the Philadelphia Business Journal. Her work has also appeared on CNN and Forbes.com. She has covered hardware, software and networking, as well as the business side of technology. She has won several journalism awards, including a national ASBPE award for best staff-written column, and was named Marketing Computers hardest working tech journalist on their inaugural list of top tech journalists. Jessica can be reached at jessica.davis@ziffdavisenterprise.com