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IBM Power 770 and 780 Technical Overview and Introduction


This IBM® Redpaper™ publication is a comprehensive guide covering the IBM Power 770 and Power 780 servers supporting IBM AIX®, IBM i, and Linux® operating systems. The goal of this paper is to introduce the major innovative Power 770 and 780 offerings and their prominent functions, including:

  • Unique modular server packaging
  • The specialized IBM POWER7™ Level 3 cache that provides greater bandwidth, capacity, and reliability
  • The 1 Gb or 10 Gb Integrated Virtual Ethernet adapter that brings native hardware virtualization up to 64 logical ports on this server
  • IBM PowerVM™ virtualization including PowerVM Live Partition Mobility and PowerVM Active Memory™ Sharing
  • Active Memory Expansion that provides more usable memory than what is physically installed on the system
  • IBM EnergyScale™ technology that provides features such as power trending, power-saving, capping of power, and thermal measurement
  • Enterprise-ready reliability, serviceability, and availability

Professionals who want to acquire a better understanding of IBM Power Systems™ products should read this paper.

This paper expands the current set of IBM Power Systems documentation by providing a desktop reference that offers a detailed technical description of the 770 and 780 systems.

This paper does not replace the latest marketing materials and configuration tools. It is intended as an additional source of information that, together with existing sources, may be used to enhance your knowledge of IBM server solutions.

Chapter 1. General description
Chapter 2. Architecture and technical overview
Chapter 3. Virtualization
Chapter 4. Continuous availability and manageability

Chapter 1. General description
1.1 Overview of systems
1.2 Operating environment
1.3 Physical package
1.4 System features
1.4.1 Power 770 system features
1.4.2 Power 780 system features
1.4.3 Minimum features
1.4.4 Power supply features
1.4.5 Processor card features
1.4.6 Summary of processor features
1.4.7 Memory features
1.5 Disk and media features
1.6 I/O drawers
1.6.1 PCI-DDR 12X Expansion Drawers (#5796)
1.6.2 12X I/O Drawer PCIe (#5802 and #5877)
1.6.3 I/O drawers and usable PCI slot
1.7 Comparison between models
1.8 Build to Order
1.9 IBM Editions
1.10 Model upgrade
1.10.1 Upgrade considerations
1.11 Hardware Management Console models
1.12 System racks
1.12.1 IBM 7014 Model T00 rack
1.12.2 IBM 7014 Model T42 rack
1.12.3 IBM 7014 Model S25 rack
1.12.4 Feature number 0555 rack
1.12.5 Feature number 0551 rack
1.12.6 Feature number 0553 rack
1.12.7 The AC power distribution unit and rack content
1.12.8 Rack-mounting rules
1.12.9 Useful rack additions

Chapter 2. Architecture and technical overview
2.1 The IBM POWER7 processor
2.1.1 POWER7 processor overview
2.1.2 POWER7 processor core
2.1.3 Simultaneous multithreading
2.1.4 Memory access
2.1.5 Flexible POWER7 processor packaging and offerings
2.1.6 On-chip L3 cache innovation and Intelligent Cache
2.1.7 POWER7 processor and Intelligent Energy
2.1.8 Comparison of the POWER7 and POWER6 processors
2.2 POWER7 processor cards
2.3 Memory subsystem
2.3.1 Fully buffered DIMM
2.3.2 Memory placement rules
2.3.3 Memory throughput
2.4 Capacity on Demand
2.4.1 Capacity Upgrade on Demand (CUoD)
2.4.2 On/Off Capacity on Demand (On/Off CoD)
2.4.3 Utility Capacity on Demand (Utility CoD)
2.4.4 Trial Capacity On Demand (Trial CoD)
2.4.5 Software licensing and CoD
2.5 Drawer interconnection cables
2.6 System bus
2.6.1 I/O buses and GX++ card
2.6.2 FSP bus
2.7 Internal I/O subsystem
2.7.1 Blind-swap cassettes
2.7.2 System ports
2.8 Integrated Virtual Ethernet adapter
2.8.1 IVE subsystem and feature codes
2.9 PCI adapters
2.9.1 LAN adapters
2.9.2 Graphics accelerators
2.9.3 SCSI and SAS adapters
2.9.4 iSCSI
2.9.5 Fibre Channel adapter
2.9.6 Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE)
2.9.7 InfiniBand Host Channel adapter
2.9.8 Asynchronous adapter
2.10 Internal storage
2.10.1 Dual split backplane mode
2.10.2 Triple split backplane
2.10.3 Dual storage IOA configurations
2.10.4 DVD
2.11 External I/O subsystems
2.11.1 PCI-DDR 12X Expansion drawer (#5796)
2.11.2 12X I/O Drawer PCIe (#5802 and #5877)
2.11.3 12X I/O Drawer PCIe and PCI-DDR 12X Expansion Drawer 12X cabling
2.11.4 12X I/O Drawer PCIe and PCI-DDR 12X Expansion Drawer SPCN cabling
2.12 External disk subsystems
2.12.1 EXP 12S Expansion Drawer
2.12.2 IBM System Storage
2.13 Hardware Management Console
2.13.1 HMC Functional overview
2.13.2 HMC connectivity to the POWER7 processor based systems
2.13.3 High availability using the HMC
2.13.4 HMC code level
2.14 Operating system support
2.15 Compiler technology
2.16 Energy management
2.16.1 IBM EnergyScale technology
2.16.2 Thermal power management device (TPMD) card

Chapter 3. Virtualization
3.1 POWER Hypervisor
3.2 POWER processor modes
3.3 Active Memory Expansion
3.4 PowerVM
3.4.1 PowerVM editions
3.4.2 Logical partitions (LPARs)
3.4.3 Multiple Shared-Processor Pools
3.4.4 Virtual I/O Server
3.4.5 PowerVM Lx86
3.4.6 PowerVM Live Partition Mobility
3.4.7 Active Memory Sharing
3.4.8 NPIV
3.4.9 Operating System support for PowerVM
3.4.10 POWER7 Linux programming support
3.5 System Planning Tool

Chapter 4. Continuous availability and manageability
4.1 Reliability
4.1.1 Designed for reliability
4.1.2 Placement of components
4.1.3 Redundant components and concurrent repair
4.2 Availability
4.2.1 Partition availability priority
4.2.2 General detection and deallocation of failing components
4.2.3 Memory protection
4.2.4 Cache protection
4.2.5 Special uncorrectable error handling
4.2.6 PCI enhanced error handling
4.3 Serviceability
4.3.1 Detecting
4.3.2 Diagnosing
4.3.3 Reporting
4.3.4 Notifying
4.3.5 Locating and servicing
4.4 Manageability
4.4.1 Service user interfaces
4.4.2 IBM Power Systems firmware maintenance
4.4.3 Electronic Services and Electronic Service Agent
4.5 Operating system support for RAS features


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