Supermicro is a Taiwanese multinational manufacturer of server motherboards. The company was founded in 1988. Supermicro has grown to become one of the largest motherboard manufacturers in the world by offering innovative technology, high quality products and reliable customer support.
The company provides hardware for a wide range of industries including cloud computing, enterprise servers, supercomputing and private datacenters. More than 60% of Fortune 500 companies use Supermicro’s product line for their systems as well as leading research institutions such as CERN and NASA where a large portion of their servers are made by Supermicro. The company employs more than 13,000 people worldwide and has facilities in California, Massachusetts, Taiwan and China.
In 2011, Supermicro was ranked 4th in the Top 10 U.S. hardware vendors by IDC. In the same year Gartner placed Supermicro as the 3rd largest server vendor worldwide.
Supermicro designs and manufactures its own products, including motherboards for mounting other manufacturers’ processors, storage devices and networking components as well as complete systems ranging from compact form factors to 1U rackmounts with support for large high-end multi-core processors such as Intel Xeon E5-2600 v3 or Xeon Phi as well as up to 8 expansion slots.
Supermicro’s products include:
Platforms – Supermicro offers platform solutions for high-end data centre and supercomputing applications. Platforms consist of a combination of hardware and software components including Intel Xeon E5-2600 v3 or Xeon Phi processors, support for multiple expansion cards and industrial grade components such as server level power supplies. The following is a list of some of the platforms;
Blade servers – Supermicro provides blade servers for datacenter use. The currently available versions are based on Intel Xeon E5-2600 v3 or Xeon Phi processors with support for up to 14 SATA drives or 10 NVMe drives respectively in 2U form factor. Blade servers are used for cluster computing and storage applications. The following is a list of some of the blade servers;
Compute nodes – Compute nodes can be built using one of the platforms listed above. Nodes can be built with multiple Intel Xeon E5-2600 v3 or Xeon Phi processors, memory, storage and other components. Supermicro also provides dense 1U server nodes which combine two or four compute nodes into a single 1U unit. The following is a list of some of the compute node configurations;
Supermicro also sells small form factor products such as 3.5″ Mini-ITX, Micro ATX and compact ATX motherboard products with up to two expansion cards per board.
Supermicro has introduced a line of server motherboards that support only accelerated processing units (APUs). Motherboards for APUs (code name: “AM1B” series) are designed to offer maximum compatibility with AMD EPYC 7000 processors, feature onboard controllers for SATA-based M.2 and U.2 NVMe devices as well as 4x GbE LAN ports. The motherboard also features a dedicated IPMI controller in the form of an AMD SoC.
Supermicro offers a range of business-grade hardware components such as power supplies and server-grade cooling systems for their motherboards. The cooling systems are designed to be compact and allow for maximum noise reduction through features such as rubber isolation mounts. Supermicro’s rack mountable air shrouds include both front fans and rear fans. Heat sinks on the motherboard can be configured to be cooled by either air or liquid. Liquid cooling for the heat sinks typically involves using a passive heat exchanger to cool the liquid which is then pumped into the heat sink’s CPU or GPU water blocks using a pump and reservoir system connected to the motherboard using tubing.
Supermicro offers a range of internal storage solutions including the Supermicro Storage Server series and the Supermicro Storage Tray series. The former consists of hot-swappable chassis that are designed to be compatible with the blade servers above. The latter is a tray system designed to be used in rackmount servers and can hold up to 99 disk drives, with each tray supporting seven disk drives.
Supermicro’s software product line includes BIOS, BMCs and other tools for remote management of its hardware from a single point. Supermicro’s hardware management software can work over standard Ethernet networks making it accessible from anywhere on the network, provided that there is an Ethernet connection between the server and the management computer.