SMART Modular Technologies has announced the Gen-Z Micro Development Kit (μDK) for the development and testing of Gen-Z in-band management and fabric manager software.

Gen-Z is a high-speed fabric protocol which uses existing 802.3 or PCIe PHY infrastructure for accessing a disaggregated memory pool that resides on a different rack or server.

SMART Modular’s Gen-Z µDK is a compact standalone hardware platform designed to enable early adopters of the Gen-Z protocol to design beyond the boundaries of software-defined or hardware-assisted acceleration framework. It also allows them to explore the full capabilities of Gen-Z protocol for Memory-Driven Computing (MDC) applications.

SMART Modular’s μDK includes both hardware and software components for the Gen-Z Host and Gen-Z Device and will run end-to-end memory load-store accesses on a Gen-Z fabric out of the box. SMART Modular is offering a limited number of the specialised Gen-Z µDK.

Technical specifications

  • Gen-Z Host supports four (4) high speed lanes. · Combination of Gen-Z devices (ZMM) which can provide 768GB of DDR4 memory.
  • Stable Linux kernel with Gen-Z sub-system framework supports bridge driver and device tree (.dts) files.
  • Accessory cables, power supply and debug boards provided for application bring-up.
  • Kit comes in a small chassis with cooling fans, all of which can fit on a lab bench or workstation.

Use cases

  • Enables extension of Gen-Z software eco-systems, such as a Linux framework and drivers.
  • Offers development of Gen-Z cable hosts with advanced protocol features like collectives, atomics, and buffer operations.
  • Validates and tests memory access load/store latencies over Gen-Z fabric.
  • Functions as a complete, out-of-the-box reference design for use case demo purposes.
  • Enables developers to explore Gen-Z capabilities directly from their lab desk, which saves time and money by integrating components, such as boards, chassis, modules, power supplies and fans in one kit.
  • SMART’s Gen-Z μDK is built using FPGA components that allow in-field upgrades of firmware and hardware as new features are released, and to add custom features and offload functions for differentiation and prototyping.