Web accounts

Inspur begins selling the Chinese web giant’s internal servers • The Register

Inspur Technologies, maker of Chinese star kits, and local e-commerce titan JD.com have begun jointly offering servers — the very kit the web bazaar uses in production.

The new “ORS3000S Liquid Cooled Rack Server” uses liquid cooling plate technology that Inspur has already deployed in other products. As the name suggests, the technology involves running cold water through plates that reside inside the servers. The heat produced by the servers warms this water as it circulates, so the servers can keep their cool when the hotter water comes out and takes heat with it as it leaves. Inspur uses drop sensors to ensure that leaks or condensation don’t erase the benefits this form of liquid cooling provides.

Oddly enough, Inpsur and JD.com haven’t revealed product specs, but other Inspur products with similar names and form factors — the new offering is sold as a server rack — do offer compute nodes that contain a pair of Ice Lake from Intel. Upgradable Xeon processors, plus 32 DDR4 memory slots, another 16 dedicated to Intel Optane, plus eight 2.5-inch NVMe SSDs and a pair of SATA SSDs. Inspur has stayed away from ugly US lists of companies thought to be in the palm of the Chinese government and/or military, so it has retained access to US technology (last week, it launched “A6” servers that can handle the third-generation EPYC Milan of AMD-X7003 series processors).

Whatever JD.com and Inspur have packed inside the ORS3000S, they promise that it is possible to install the product within five to seven working days and could produce a usage efficiency score of energy (PUE) of 1.1, which means the kit just uses . 1W to cool for every 1W it needs to run.

Data centers that achieve a PUE of 1.2 typically use this achievement as a selling point.

The servers are based on designs that JD.com uses in its own data centers. Both companies claim to have faced flurries of work during China’s massive online retail seasons, delivering a performance boost of 34-56% at an impressive PUE.

The product was first announced at Inspur’s partner conference in China – a venue that suggests Inspur and JD want to start switching units. The existence of the product was revealed to the rest of the world this week.

Inspur has a solid reputation as a manufacturer of servers for major brand vendors, hyperscalers, customers for which it happily designs and manufactures custom kits. The company also builds to Open Compute Project specifications and offers a hyperconverged kit ready to run stacks from VMware, Nutanix, or Microsoft.

Working with JD.com is not new to Inspur. Earlier this month, the pair reached an agreement to advance China’s digitalization and smart cities plan. But it’s unusual for Inspur to market a custom product. ®