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NVIDIA delivers its first cloud-based GPUs

Posted on Wednesday, October 17 2012 @ 20:07:35 CEST by

NVIDIA introduces its first VGX boards, a new line of cloud-based GPUs designed to deliver workstation graphics capabilities to any screen. These new cards will let virtual machines use a graphics card installed in a remote server to accelerate video games, GPGPU applications, and video.

The VGX lineup will be made available to OEM partners, and servers using the cards should arrive in early 2013. ARS Technica has details about the specifications of both the VGX K1 and the VGX K2, two cards designed for very different purposes.

Interestingly, the VGX K1 features four entry-level Kepler GPUs with 192 CUDA cores per GPU and a total of 16GB DDR3 memory. The card has a TDP of 150W but only requires a passive dual-slot cooling solution. The VGX K1 is intended to simultaneously deliver basic 3D and video acceleration to up to 100 users.

The VGX K2 on the other hand features two high-end Kepler GPUs, it has a total of 3072 CUDA cores and 8GB GDDR5 memory. Described as two NVIDIA Quadro K5000 workstation cards fused together, this card is designed to bring workstation-class graphics performance to two users at a time. Surprisingly, despite the 225W TDP this card is also passively cooled.

NVIDIA VGX graphics cards

Engineers and design professionals will be able to work anywhere on virtually any device and still have access to the computing and graphics performance of a GPU-powered workstation, with today's launch of the cloud-based NVIDIA® VGX™ K2 GPU.

Built on the NVIDIA Kepler™ architecture -- the world's fastest, most efficient GPU architecture -- VGX K2 adds unprecedented workstation capabilities to the NVIDIA VGX platform, which was announced earlier this year.

The NVIDIA VGX platform utilizes the GPU to allow enterprises to efficiently deliver virtualized workstation performance and capabilities -- including rich multimedia and 3D graphics -- to users on smartphones, tablets or PCs. Its VGX K2 board, which includes two workstation-class GPUs, enables enterprises to increase user density without sacrificing performance or application compatibility.

Other key benefits of NVIDIA VGX K2 include:
  • Faster interactivity: With 4 GB of graphics memory per GPU, VGX K2 ensures that graphics-intensive design and content-creation applications run with ease.
  • Low-latency remote display: Patent-pending remote display technology minimizes the lag traditionally associated with virtual desktop computing.
  • Data center power efficiency: Using SMX, a revolutionary streaming multiprocessor, VGX K2 provides unsurpassed performance per watt for enterprise data centers.

    "The VGX platform has been developed to bring rich, interactive graphics to all enterprise virtual desktop users," said Jeff Brown, general manager of the Professional Solutions Group at NVIDIA. "With VGX K2 in the data center, designers and engineers who create the core intellectual property for their companies can now access their IP from any device and still enjoy workstation-class performance."

    NVIDIA and Citrix Expand Enterprise Presence of Workstation-Class Virtual Desktops Citrix XenDesktop with HDX 3DPro uses NVIDIA VGX technology to deliver a faster, more interactive user experience. In combination with Citrix XenDesktop and Citrix XenApp, the NVIDIA VGX K2 board provides users full compatibility and performance of all their graphics and GPU computing-intensive applications. In addition, the ecosystem of Citrix Ready partners around HDX 3D will be able to use VGX K2 to provide workstation-class performance.

    "In our increasingly global and mobile economy, companies are looking more and more to desktop virtualization as a critical solution, and we're working closely with NVIDIA to offer the most advanced virtualized user experience on the market," said Krishna Subramanian, vice president of marketing and partner engagement at Citrix. "XenDesktop with NVIDIA VGX acceleration aims to deliver workstation-class performance to the most demanding users in enterprises, while also increasing user density in their data centers."

    Supporting Partner Quote
    "NVIDIA's GPU virtualization technology builds on and accelerates Cisco's vision of delivering virtual desktops and rich-media applications through the cloud, and helps to enable enterprise customers to deploy simple, scalable and highly secure virtualization solutions," said Satinder Sethi, vice president at Cisco, an NVIDIA technology partner.

    The NVIDIA VGX K2 platform for virtual workstations is expected to be available from leading server OEMs starting in early 2013.



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