Compute Infrastructure

Bare metal: The powerful foundation of IBM Cloud

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Bare metal servers are the core building blocks of the IBM Cloud portfolio. They are not an afterthought or an “also available” kind of product. They are the highly configurable, high performance, on demand cloud resources that clients have been ordering from us for the past 10 years. While other providers focused exclusively on virtual servers, we set our sights on perfecting the compute portfolio we knew customers would need to meet the most demanding of security, compliance, consistency, and performance requirements.

When we started building our cloud portfolio in 2005, we recognized that clients would need single- and multi-tenant resources. And even within those resource groups, clients would need choice. Kurt Florus, chief technical officer at Bluebee, said, “A key differentiator is the availability of bare metal servers with fine-grained capabilities for defining what you need. With IBM Cloud, you can engineer a system fitted exactly for the task at hand.”

We let our customers build a bare metal server with add-ons that provide next-level compute performance to help accelerate heavy workloads, such as:

  • Configurations with four different NVIDIA GPU options for machine learning, deep learning, and AI
  • 15+ SAP-certified configurations for production of SAP NetWeaver and SAP HANA workload

Our bare metal servers offer myriad options to perfectly meet the needs of individual workloads, and that has led to some of the most performance-hungry data-driven businesses like DataXu to choose IBM Cloud. In fact, our partner VMware made a massive push into the cloud by offering VMware environments on IBM Cloud bare metal servers before launching its own managed bare metal offering.

We believe bare metal servers should provide flexibility, power, security, and global reach.


Our bare metal server options let you choose between monthly and hourly versions, so you don’t pay for unused or underused resources. We support over 20 operating system versions to meet you where you are. You also get local drive options—up to 40 drives per server.


With RAM selections from 8GB up to 12TB and computing power options from 4 core single socket models up to 192 core 8 socket models, your workloads get the performance power they need.


Private network bandwidth is always included with our bare metal servers.

Global reach

Our customers get the freedom to build servers from the ground up to exact spec requirements and then deploy in real time in any of our global data centers.

Why did we take this approach to bare metal servers so early? Because our cloud is the cloud for business. Whether you are a startup needing bare metal in the cloud on an hourly basis with 32GB RAM, one hard drive, and entry-level procs to test apps or you’re a multi-national enterprise needing 192 core 8 socket bare metal workhorses with 12 P100 GPUs running round the clock to power your mission-critical databases, we’ve got you covered.

Director, IBM Cloud Platform, Compute Offering Management

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