spear1310 dual-core cortex A9, SATA-II etc. etc.
folks, many apologies: in the search for various Cortex A9s that also
have SATA-II i'd completely forgotten about the STmicroelectronics
spear1310. ST have this strange habit of throwing money at CPU
designs in an iterative cycle. the spear1310 they could only get up
to 600mhz, and decided to not do things like ooo put on a proprietary
3D GPU engine... at all.
so it would actually make an absolutely stonking FSF Hardware-endorsed
oh, and get this: it takes up to DDR3-1066mhz (ECC available),
actually has _three_ SATA-II ports, _three_ PCIe 2.0 ports, 2 gigabit
ethernet, and even a bloody 32-bit PCI port! oh, and 2 USB2 plus 1
USB-OTG. of course.
if you could actually find a low-cost - and low-power - PCI 3D
Graphics IC (if they still exist!) it would be possible to build a
stonking system based around this CPU. buuut, even without doing
that, the SO-DIMM form-factor module designed by phytec for ZT
System's 8-way server already exists. wonder if they'd actually sell
it in single qtys (phytec or zt-systems)...