Murphy's Law

Anything That Can Go Wrong, Will Go Wrong

For those of you that may not know, I am an Academic Director of MCT at Howest University here in Belgium. I perform research in our labs here on big data analytics, virtualization, cloud computing, and server technology in general. We do all the testing here in the lab, and I also do launch article testing for AnandTech.

Undoubtedly, like most academic institutions, we have a summer vacation, where our labs are locked and we are told to get some sunlight. AMD's Rome launch has happened just as our lab closing started, and so I had the Rome server delivered to my home lab instead. The only issue was that our corresponding Intel server was still in the academic lab. Normally this isn't really a problem - even when the lab is open, I issue testing through remote access and process the data that way, in order to reboot the system and run tests and so forth. If a hardware change is needed, I need to be physically there, but usually this isn't a problem.

However, as Murphy's Law would have it, during testing for this review, our Domain Controller also crashed while our labs were closed. We could not reach our older servers any more. This has limited us somewhat in our testing - while I can test this Rome system during normal hours at the home lab (can't really run it overnight, it is a server and therefore loud), I couldn't issue any benchmarks to our Naples / Cascade Lake systems in the lab.

As a result, our only option was to limit ourselves to the benchmarks already done on the EPYC 7601, Skylake, and Cascade Lake machines. Rest assured that we will be back with our usual Big Data/AI and other real world tests once we can get our complete testing infrastructure up and running. 

Benchmark Configuration and Methodology

All of our testing was conducted on Ubuntu Server 18.04 LTS, except for the EPYC 7742 server, which was running Ubuntu 19.04. The reason was simple: we were told that 19.04 had validated support for Rome, and with two weeks of testing time, we wanted to complete what was possible. Support (including X2APIC/IOMMU patches to utilize 256 threads) for Rome is available with Linux Kernel 4.19 and later. 

You will notice that the DRAM capacity varies among our server configurations. This is of course a result of the fact that Xeons have access to six memory channels while EPYC CPUs have eight channels. As far as we know, all of our tests fit in 128 GB, so DRAM capacity should not have much influence on performance. 


AMD Daytona - Dual EPYC 7742

AMD sent us the "Daytona XT" server, a reference platform build by ODM Quanta (D52BQ-2U). 

CPU ​AMD EPYC 7742 (2.25 GHz, 64c, 256 MB L3, 225W)
RAM 512 GB (16x32 GB) Micron DDR4-3200
Internal Disks SAMSUNG MZ7LM240 (bootdisk)
Micron 9300 3.84 TB (data)
Motherboard Daytona reference board: S5BQ
PSU PWS-1200

Although the 225W TDP CPUs needs extra heatspipes and heatsinks, there are still running on air cooling... 

AMD EPYC 7601 –  (2U Chassis)

CPU Two EPYC 7601  (2.2 GHz, 32c, 8x8MB L3, 180W)
RAM 512 GB (16x32 GB) Samsung DDR4-2666 @2400
Internal Disks SAMSUNG MZ7LM240 (bootdisk)
Intel SSD3710 800 GB (data)
Motherboard AMD Speedway
PSU 1100W PSU (80+ Platinum)

Intel's Xeon "Purley" Server – S2P2SY3Q (2U Chassis)

CPU Two Intel Xeon Platinum 8280  (2.7 GHz, 28c, 38.5MB L3, 205W)
Two Intel Xeon Platinum 8176  (2.1 GHz, 28c, 38.5MB L3, 165W)
RAM 384 GB (12x32 GB) Hynix DDR4-2666
Internal Disks SAMSUNG MZ7LM240 (bootdisk)
Micron 9300 3.84 TB (data)
Motherboard Intel S2600WF (Wolf Pass baseboard)
Chipset Intel Wellsburg B0
PSU 1100W PSU (80+ Platinum)

We enabled hyper-threading and Intel virtualization acceleration.

The BIG LIST of Rome CPUs: Core Counts and Frequencies Memory Subsystem: Bandwidth


View All Comments

  • negusp - Wednesday, August 7, 2019 - link

    hard F in the chat for intel Reply
  • pancakes - Wednesday, August 7, 2019 - link

    F in chat for wallets of people running Windows server Reply
  • azfacea - Wednesday, August 7, 2019 - link

    windows server in 2019 LUL Reply
  • diehardmacfan - Wednesday, August 7, 2019 - link

    on-prem Windows Server is probably at an all time high in 2019? Reply
  • azfacea - Thursday, August 8, 2019 - link

    desperate for a comeback huh? cool hold your 10% tight and gloat about upcoming bfloat16 Reply
  • diehardmacfan - Thursday, August 8, 2019 - link

    Sorry, who is desperate for a comeback? Bring up a floating point format when called out on the ridiculous notion that Windows Server isn't still a large part of the marketplace? say wha Reply
  • mkaibear - Thursday, August 8, 2019 - link

    Just hopping in to say that I am an IT manager for a major employer in the UK and of our 1800 servers more than 80% of them are Windows... this is not a trend which I see changing any time soon. Reply
  • npz - Thursday, August 8, 2019 - link

    Many smaller IT depts in smaller companies use Windows because of familiarity for desktop support such as Active Directory for domains, but none of major critical data center centric, HPC, military, infrastructure are running Windows. Most especially not with EPYC since the Windows scheduler is broken. Reply
  • Manch - Thursday, August 8, 2019 - link

    NPZ, You may be speaking for your bubble, but not for the rest. Reply
  • blaktron - Thursday, August 8, 2019 - link

    this is 100% false. I do infrastructure consulting for 9 figure companies and they are all primarily windows in their corporate infrastructure. all of them. the only linux you will find in the Fortune 50 is legacy applications and web presentation layer. There are exceptions, but that's true enough to form a rule. Reply

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