Google, IBM, Mellanox, NVIDIA and Tyan today announced plans to form the OpenPOWER Consortium - an open development alliance based on IBM's POWER microprocessor architecture.
The Consortium intends to build advanced server, networking, storage and GPU-acceleration technology aimed at delivering more choice, control and flexibility to developers of next-generation, hyperscale and cloud data centers.
The move makes POWER hardware and software available to open development for the first time as well as making POWER IP licensable to others. The consortium will offer open-source POWER firmware, the software that controls basic chip functions. By doing this, IBM and the consortium can offer customization in creating new styles of server hardware for a variety of computing workloads.
"The founding members of the OpenPOWER Consortium represent the next generation in data-center innovation," said Steve Mills, senior vice president, and group executive, IBM Software & Systems. "Combining our talents and assets around the POWER architecture can greatly increase the rate of innovation throughout the industry. Developers now have access to an expanded and open set of server technologies for the first time. This type of 'collaborative development' model will change the way data center hardware is designed and deployed."
As part of their initial collaboration within the consortium, NVIDIA and IBM will work together to integrate the CUDA GPU and POWER ecosystems.