Intel Introduces Pay-to-Play “DLC” Features for Xeon Processors: On Demand


After a prolonged silence, Intel has finally introduced its “On Demand” service, a sort of pay-to-play model similar to DLCs in video games. The 4th Gen Xeon and Xeon Max processors will be the first to leverage this model, allowing consumers to activate certain accelerators and security features for an additional price. This way, clients can unlock features meant for only select models, a prime example being the Quick Assist Technology (QAT).

Intel On Demand comes in two forms, a Consumption, and an Activation Model. The former is metered, allowing for flexible performance scaling and consumption, and the latter is a one-time pay-to-activate license model meant for security features. These are as follows:

Security:

  • Intel Software Guard Extensions

Communications & Storage Suite:

  • Intel Data Streaming Accelerator
  • Intel Quick Assist Technology (QAT)
  • Intel Dynamic Load Balancers

Analytics Suite:

  • Intel In-Memory Analytics Accelerator
  • Intel Data Streaming Accelerator

In September last year, Intel introduced On Demand as Software Defined Silicon (SDSi) but it has been rebranded for marketing reasons. In the cloud environment, Intel also offers On Demand via the Consumption Model to providers such as Lenovo, HPE, and Supermicro. The chipmaker officially rolled out support for SDSi with Linux 5.18.

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