Intel Arc gaming GPUs can be used in data centers
ServeTheHome has confirmed with Intel that their upcoming desktop Arc GPUs can be used in servers.
The consumer Arc A7 mid-range GPU series for gaming were not designed for large-scale operations with multiple GPU instances running alongside each other. For this, Intel has a separate line of products called Data Center GPU Flex series, which are essentially the same cards except they don’t have physical display connectors and fans.
However, if there are still people who would rather buy Arc A7 GPUs for servers, that will be a non-issue according to Intel, who will grant license even for such a use. This means that Intel will have a similar software licensing model to AMD, but entirely different from NVIDIA.
At the event, I also confirmed a key detail. Intel is not going to limit its desktop cards to desktops only. Unlike NVIDIA’s CUDA license, the company said it was not planning to prohibit their use in servers. That was a welcome announcement.
NVIDIA does not allow GeForce or TITAN GPUs to be used in data centers. NVIDIA is simply not granting a software license (aka drivers) for datacenter deployment. This should be enough to convince serious businesses or governments to deploy data-center hardware instead. Obviously, this will not stop smaller players.
Interestingly, NVIDIA license still allows ‘blockchain processing’, which should mean cutting-edge technologies, but in most cases means cryptomining. Meanwhile, it looks like Arc GPUs can be used for anything… in anything.