Amazon Web Services this week started to offer M5ad and R5ad Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) instances powered by custom AMD EPYC 7000-series processors and featuring faster local storage. 

The new AMD EPYC-powered servers for M5ad and R5ad instances offer high-performance, low latency local NVMe storage subsystems that support XTS-AES-256 block cipher in hardware to ensure data protection. The key to protect a data for a specific instance is deleted when the instance is stopped or terminated.

The AWS M5ad instances are used for general purpose workloads, including app servers, web servers, gaming, logging, media processing, and so on. Amazon offers M5ad instances in six sizes with up to 96 vCPUs, up to 768 GB of memory, and up to 3.6 TB of NVMe storage.

The AWS R5ad are aimed at more demanding memory-intensive workloads, such as in-memory analytics, data mining, caching, simulations, etc. The company offers them in six versions featuring up to 96 vCPUs, up to 768 GB of memory, and up to 3.6 TB of NVMe storage.

All the instances are running at 2.5 GHz, and Amazon state that they cost 10% less than the equivalent Intel Skylake-based instances with similar configurations. The new M5ad and R5ad instances are available in the US East (N. Virginia), US West (Oregon), US East (Ohio), and Asia Pacific (Singapore) Regions in various forms.

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Source: Amazon Web Services

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  • rahvin - Friday, March 29, 2019 - link

    What do you mean when you say " powered by custom AMD EPYC 7000-series processors"?

    Does this mean AMD is producing Custom produced CPU variants for Amazon? In what way are these custom?

    AFAIK AMD has not provided custom spun silicon of their major Server CPU's in the past and their entry into this market segment would be significant news as it's a market segment that Intel alone has occupied.

    Could you please clarify if that is what you meant of if you were simply saying they are providing VM instances where you can specify EPYC cpu's as the bare metal CPU. I could read that sentence either way and the ramifications towards AMD's stock could be significant if it's Custom silicon as it would mean they have moved into the market segment and have gotten traction.
  • darkswordsman17 - Friday, March 29, 2019 - link

    I'm not sure he'd be able to say as I doubt AMD and Amazon have made what the custom aspect entails known outside of themselves.

    AMD has touted their willingness to customize products for customers, and because Intel was already doing it, chances are AMD would have to just to be able to compete. Er, this announcement is literally about them having moved into the market segment and thus gotten traction. I don't think this would really be that big of a deal with regards to their stock since I think AMD has been open about customizing products and going after major cloud markets. It will be all about the numbers as far as it mattering on stock prices, but this is a good sign for AMD. Its clear EPYC is getting traction as it seems like almost all the major players are using/offering it.

    I would be interested in knowing what "equivalent Skylake based instances with similar configurations" means, as wouldn't that mean AMD is cheaper than older Intel systems (which I'd assume are cheaper than their most modern ones?), although if its because Intel is needing more sockets/CPUs to match core count/memory support that would be easy to see why. Or is AMD both cheaper and have advantage (so same number of CPUs, but AMD offers more cores and more memory per CPU - which granted mostly reduces Amazon's cost)?
  • GreenReaper - Saturday, March 30, 2019 - link

    It's potentially worth it even if they don't sell any instances all, because merely having the option increases pressure on Intel to lower its bid to compete. At this scale, "cheaper" is negotiable.
  • Topweasel - Sunday, March 31, 2019 - link

    Custom here is like the custom on the streaming game service which is probably Intel by the specs. It probably means binned to order. Like if they say "get us 32c CPU's but give them 200W, do you think you can give use 3.0GHz base clocK". If they say that only 1% of their dies can pull it off, and it would be 50% more expensive (so 6-8k instead of 4-5k). Amazon says deal and now AMD is providing a custom SKU.
  • duploxxx - Monday, April 1, 2019 - link

    exactly, these are specific binned CPU for a custom deal. btw If you believe that Intel was the only one, what do you think these guys have been doing for years? Now you can also add the custom Google Navi7 to it.

    Just a few months to go and AMD will take even more market share away from intel with launch of EPYC2. The 14++++++ refresh Intel has on release schedule within 2 weeks is nothing compared to the new zen2.
  • rahvin - Tuesday, April 2, 2019 - link

    Intel is doing far more than binning. The AVX512 "addon" came out of their custom build business. They have been developing and spinning custom x86 silicon for a few years now due to demand from the cloud business and fortune 500 companies, including integrating various custom designed parts into their CPU's, including things like adding FPGA's and ASIC cores into or attached to their server CPU's.

    AMD outside it's console business has had no real traction in this market. It's entry into this market would be a very big deal, as it would validate the speculation that part of it's chiplet design decisions was based on tackling this highly lucrative market segment with the ability to add things like ARM core chiplets, ASIC's and FPGA's to the final chip.
  • twotwotwo - Friday, March 29, 2019 - link

    The R5ad machines look great for caching that's storage/bandwidth bound. (Some DB workloads are the same way, though others not.)
  • Smell This - Sunday, March 31, 2019 - link

    So. I'm just wonderin' . . . AWS is the Big Kahuna in The Cloud.

    Are my kitty pictures and pOrn "instances" soon to be co-mingling in the AWS Cloud with blockchains from the CIA and DoD ?
  • Smell This - Monday, April 1, 2019 - link
    - Dec 06, 2017

    "single-source cloud strategy since the Department of Defense announced an aggressive, enterprise-wide cloud adoption"

    "Sky-Net is calling on line one, Mr Bezos ...."

    Interesting enough, 'hiding in plain sight' in a block cypher in the Cloud as specific instances are deleted may be the wave of the future. Am I missing something?

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