Microsoft has significantly increased the processing power of its UK datacentres, making it the country’s first hyperscale cloud provider offering virtual machines capable of running graphics-intensive workloads.
Announcing this new cloud offering, Microsoft’s Senior Director of Business Strategy, Graham Hill, said the company could now offer unrivalled opportunities for companies of all sizes in the UK. He added: “We are seeing huge demand for our cloud services, as firms digitally transform to meet the needs of their customers.
The launch of G-Series, H-series and N-series
G-series, H-series and N-series virtual machines (VMs) have been made available at Microsoft’s UK South data region. These are effectively able to make multiple copies of developers’ devices, to vastly increase computing power.
Each of the three series have distinct functions and will therefore target different users. The G series uses the Intel Xeon processor E5 v3 family, offering up to 32 virtual central processing unit (CPU) cores, 448 gigabytes of memory, and 6.14 terabytes of local Solid State Drive (SSD) space. As such, Microsoft claims, it’s perfect for the most demanding applications.
Meanwhile, the H-series VM is designed for those working on data-intensive tasks, to eradicate the lag and slowdown commonplace on existing solutions. This is targeted at anyone working on complex scientific or engineering-based tasks, such as weather forecasting simulations and seismic exploration.
Finally, the N-series VMs are powered by NVIDIA graphics processing units, making them ideal for high-performance simulations, rendering and DNA sequencing. One company that got its hands on the VMs was City of Hope, a research and treatment centre specialising in cancer and diabetes. By using Microsoft’s cloud services, the company was able to cut the time it took to study proteins down from one month to just a few days. As a result, it could design revolutionary new drugs much more efficiently.
Hill added: “We are delighted to announce the release of the G-Series, H-Series and N-Series services in the UK, which are perfect for anyone wanting to unlock the business possibilities behind large amounts of information.”