Gen-Z Micro Development Kit eases development

September 15, 2020 //By Ally Winning
SMART Modular Technologies’ Gen-Z Micro Development Kit (μDK) provides a small and easy to use way to develop and test Gen-Z in-band management and fabric manager software.
SMART Modular Technologies’ Gen-Z Micro Development Kit (μDK) provides a small and easy to use way to develop and test Gen-Z in-band management and fabric manager software.

Gen-Z was developed to be a high-speed fabric protocol that uses the existing 802.3 or PCIe PHY infrastructure to access a disaggregated memory pool on a different rack or server. SMART Modular’s Gen-Z µDK is a small standalone hardware platform that allows Gen-Z protocol developers to design beyond the boundaries of software-defined or hardware-assisted acceleration frameworks. It also allows exploration of the full capabilities of the Gen-Z protocol for Memory-Driven Computing (MDC) applications.

“The Gen-Z interconnect standard for rack-scale and hyper-scale computing systems is helping to boost performance, increase efficiency and lower costs,” said Mike Rubino, vice president of worldwide engineering at SMART Modular Technologies. “Gen-Z provides for heterogeneous computing and the composability of compute and storage modules. SMART Modular’s new Gen-Z μDK enables the development of Linux operating system and fabric manager software as well as memory-driven computing (MDC) load-store Gen-Z software applications -- which will accelerate the adoption and implementation of Gen-Z fabric computing systems.”

SMART Modular’s μDK provides the hardware and software components for the Gen-Z Host and Gen-Z Device. It will run end-to-end memory load-store accesses on a Gen-Z fabric straight from the box. There will be a limited number of Gen-Z µDKs, so orders are first come, first served.

Specifications

• Gen-Z Host supports four (4) high speed lanes.

• Combination of Gen-Z devices (ZMM) which can provide 768GB of DDR4 memory.

• Stable Linux kernel with Gen-Z sub-system framework supports bridge driver and device tree (.dts) files.

• Accessory cables, power supply and debug boards provided for application bring-up.

• Small chassis with cooling fans that can fit on a lab bench or workstation.

Applications

• Extension of Gen-Z software eco-systems, such as a Linux framework and drivers.

• Development of Gen-Z cable hosts with advanced protocol features like collectives, atomics, and buffer operations.

• Validates and tests memory access load/store latencies over Gen-Z fabric.

• Complete, out-of-the-box reference design for demo purposes.


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