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Sitronics Group started developing servers based on Baikal-S CPUs. Hyperconverged infrastructure solutions will become available in 2022

Russian-made servers for hyperconverged infrastructure, where the computing capacities, storage, servers, and networks are integrated using certain software, will come out in 2022. Launched in 2016, the production of Russian servers based on domestic CPUs has approached its final stage. Per information received by Rossiyaskaya Gazeta (RG), the first servers based on Baikal-S CPUs will appear on the market in the first half of 2022.

Starting work on the servers became possible after arrival in Russia of the first batch of engineering samples of Baikal-S CPUs. They are produced by TSMC, a Taiwan factory that has CPUs manufacturing contracts with numerous large producers of electronics, including AMD, Qualcomm, Nvidia and others. As RG was told by Sitronics, the company has embarked on development of server documentation. According to Nikolay Pozhidaev, the company President, a two-socket server is being designed to be used for various tasks including creation of hyperconverged infrastructures for virtualization of storage and calculations. ARMv8-A-based server prototypes will be presented right after the series Baikal-S arrival in Russia. It will happen in the first half of 2022. At this stage, the company is investing 100 million roubles in this project. However, the mass production will require a larger investment.

In 2019, IDC released their research on the Russian hyperconverged infrastructure market. According to experts, in 2018 it amounted to 55 million US dollars with an expected growth of 10% per year until 2023.

Syndicated research company Emergen Research estimated the global hyperconverged infrastructure market as 7.34 billion US dollars in 2020, and expects its average annual growth of 26.8% per year until 2028.

“Starting in 2023, the government’s decree on the mandatory use of domestic processors in the public sector workstations and data storage systems will come into effect. Therefore, it is apparent that we should start producing and testing these solutions today,” said Andrey Evdokimov, Director General of Baikal Electronics.

“The number of manufacturers producing such equipment is growing in Russia due to preparation of various regulations and thanks to the creation of unified register of national software and equipment by the Ministry of Digital Development and the Ministry of Industry and Trade,” agrees Alexander Levashov, Editor-in-Chief. “The demand for hardware for hyperconverged infrastructure is rather high, as this equipment may be used for virtually any corporate task,” Alexander Levashov  told RG.

The Ministry of Industry and Trade positively assessed the start of Baikal-S-based servers’ production. “Emergence of a new player on the national server market is always a positive event both with regard to further localization, and from the point of view of personnel development,” RG was told by this government agency.

Baikal-S server processor has been under development since October 2016, when, Baikal Electronics won the Ministry’s competition and was awarded a grant in the amount of 1.2 billion roubles. The producer was to invest a similar amount in the processor’s engineering. Baikal-S CPU is a universal platform supporting hardware virtualization, which has 18 types of communication interfaces. It is suitable for systems with very high security requirements.

The processor is released based on ARMv8-A 16 nm process, has 48 ARM Cortex-A75 cores, operating frequency of at least 2 GHz, 6-channel DDR4 3200, and 80 lines PCIe Gen4.

“The decisions made by various state bodies put this processor in high demand,” notes Sergey Vilianov, IT expert, head of “The market is waiting for Baikal-S, people are ready to use it for new projects, and people are ready to buy it. In view of this high advance demand, the producers didn’t have to worry about it too much.  However, judging by the specifications, the processors turn out to be very good, and will solve the assigned tasks. The only thing that matters is to have a comprehensive and clear application developer kit,” said Vilianov. As RG was told by Baikal Electronics, in the first quarter of the next year, Russia will receive a batch of 600 Baikal-S CPUs, of which some will be used by the developers themselves for the testing purposes. Others will be handed over to the company’s partners. The commercial batch is expected in late 2022. According to the estimates of market sources, this batch can be as big as 14,000 units. Right after completion of all the work, the process of the CPU’s registration with the register of national hardware will be initiated.

“We expect to obtain this registration in the 1st quarter of 2022. By that time, full compatibility of Baikal-S and SW Linux will be ensured,” informed us the press office of Baikal Electronics.

As market sources told RG, in December 2021, Russian OS ALT Linux will be adapted for Baikal-S. Porting of Astra Linux and RED OS is scheduled for April 2022. In the long run, Baikal-S will be provided with a comprehensive software system having all the required tooling necessary to solve almost any task.

Rossiyskaya Gazeta
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