The popularity of cloud computing has led to a dramatic increase in the number of data centers in the world. The ever-increasing computational demands along with the slowdown in technology scaling has ushered an era of power-limited servers. Techniques such as near-threshold computing (NTC) can be used to improve energy efficiency in the post-Dennard scaling era. This paper describes an architecture based on the FD-SOI process technology for near-threshold operation in servers. Our work explores the trade-offs in energy and performance when running a wide range of applications found in private and public clouds, ranging from traditional scale-out applications, such as web search or media streaming, to virtualized banking applications. Our study demonstrates the benefits of near-threshold operation and proposes several directions to synergistically increase the energy proportionality of a near-threshold server.