Azure-HX-series-HBv4-Series-Azure-VM-Comparison-Chart

Microsoft has this week announced two new Azure VMs (virtual machines) running next-generation processing. These are known as the HX-series and HBv4-series VMs and they follow Amazon’s high-performance computing (HPC) instances for the Elastic Computer Cloud (EC2) service.

Amazon’s HPC instances are powered by 3rd Gen AMD EPYC processors delivering a performance boost of 65% over the company’s other top-end capabilities.

Microsoft is now leveraging AMD’s announcement of 4th EPYC processors to deliver its own HPC instances for Azure VMs. HX-series will even get AMD’s planned Genoa X processors, which should debut in early 2023.

According to Microsoft, the next-gen VMs also provide the following features:

  • “800 GB/s of DDR5 memory bandwidth (STREAM TRIAD).
  • 400 Gb/s NVIDIA Quantum-2 CX7 InfiniBand, the first on the public cloud.
  • 80 Gb/s Azure Accelerated Networking.
  • PCIe Gen4 NVMe SSDs delivering 12 GB/s (read) and 7 GB/s (write) of storage bandwidth.”

Performance

While developing the HX-series and HBv4-series VMs, Microsoft says it tried them on multiple domains. The results show that the instances perform 2x better than the previous HBv3-series and 4 to 4 times better than server tech from four years ago.

“Azure HBv3 VMs with 3rd Gen AMD EPYC™ processors with AMD 3D V-cache™ Technology already deliver impressive levels of HPC performance, scaling MPI workloads up to 27x higher than other clouds, surpassing many of the leading supercomputers in the world, and offering the disruptive value proposition of faster time to solution with lower total cost.”

The HX-series is designed to handle larger models with 3, 4, or 5nm standards. It has 3x more RAM than before, with 60GB per core.

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