The OpenPower Consortium has been announced and aims to license the technology behind IBM's Power system. The consortium hopes to encourage the development of advanced server, storage, networking and GPU computing technologies for next generation data centers, in an open-source environment.
According to IBM, this is the first time the company's Power hardware and software are made available for open-source development. IBM will also offer open-source Power firmware in order to allow for greater customization of server hardware by the licensees.
"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 and 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."
For a start, the OpenPower consortium consists of the following companies, IBM, NVIDIA, Google, Mellanox and Tyan. IBM and NVIDIA will work closely to integrate NVIDIA's CUDA framework into the ecosystem of IBM Power. This is to ensure the ability of software, and its services, developed on the CUDA framework, to leverage on the combined hardware system of NVIDIA GPUs and IBM Power processors for optimal execution. In the near future, the newly-formed consortium hopes to be able to drive innovations to power the next-generation data centers.