AWS will be the last big cloud to add Skylake as Azure turns 'em on

Announced support November 2016, but fabled C5 instances are still vapourware

Microsoft has announced its first Azure instances running Intel's Skylake silicon, a move that means Amazon Web Services will be the last of the big four clouds to run Intel's latest silicon.

Amazon announced it would use Skylake last November 2016 at its re:Invent gabfest. Google offered Skylake in June 2017, IBM switched it on a month later and on Monday October 23rd Microsoft revealed its own efforts.

Redmond's Skylakes will power “Fv2” VM instances in the following configurations. All capacity figures are in GiB .

Instance type vCPUs Memory Local SSD Max cached and local disk IOPS Max. data disks Max.NICs 
F2s_v2 2 4 16 4000 (32) 4 2
F4s_v2 4 8 32 8000 (64) 8 2
F8s_v2 8 16 64 16000 (128) 16 4
F16s_v2 16 32 128 32000 (256) 32 8
F32s_v2 32 64 256 64000 (512) 32 8
F64s_v2 64 128 512 128000 (1024) 32 8
F72s_v2 72 144 576 144000 (1520) 32 8

All of the instances run Xeon Platinum 8168 processors at 2.7 GHz, with the chance to hit single-core turbo frequency of 3.7 GHz. The chip is a 24-core, 14nm affair with 33 MB L3 cache. Intel lists them at US$5,890 apiece. Microsoft doubtless pays less.

So does Amazon, assuming it has already acquired some to power the C5 instances it last year said “will be available in six sizes, with up to 72 vCPUs and 144 GiB of memory.”

It's far from a disaster that AWS will be last to the Skylake party. But it is a little odd, given the company's reputation as a cloud pioneer.

The Register imagines AWS will unveil the C5 at re:Invent from November 27th. ®

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