Intel claims it's licked dual CPU problem

Flipping chips and their mobo layout

Intel has moved quite a way to dispel confusion over dual processing systems using its flip chip (FC-PGA) Pentium IIIs by releasing specifications for them using the i840 (Carmel) chip set. It has also rectified conflicting messages on its Web site. The firm recently posted a PDF file on its download site, which you can find here. This is a very large document which relates to making dual systems using the FC-PGA packaging work with the i840 chipset. The paper gives recommendations for system board layouts as well as suggesting ways to overcome possible thermal problems. The latest version of its FC-PGA Pentium III datasheet, which you can download from here, now seems to suggest Intel has the problem licked. According to this sheet, it now claims that all FC-PGA processors are dual system compatible. Yesterday, we reported that Intel was sending conflicting messages to system builders, with some confusion as to which microprocessors in its Coppermine Pentium III family actually support dual configurations. Meanwhile, several readers have pointed us to a Web site which offers more information on the problem, and debates dual configurations, at this page on BP6. Meanwhile, a reader who posted a message on the Intel support forum has had a reply from a techie at the behemoth, which read: "Dual processing capability validation for FC-PGA packaged Pentium(R) III processors has been concluded. Most, but not all, FC-PGA packaged Pentium III processors indicate they have been validated for dual processor capability. This is new information, and all our websites referring to this feature will be updated soon. "The Pentium(R) III processor Specification Update contains the latest information available: "The website stating, "[FC-PGA packaged processors have] been hardware disabled for such functionality" is incorrect, and will be updated soon as well." The existence of the specifications for the i840 shows the extent of the problems Intel has had to deal with in making the move from SECC2 (Slot One) to the newer flip chip packaging. At the same time, the problem was doubtless compounded by fresh steppings of Coppermine processors, following a rash of errata which started to show up in the chips shortly after launch. We reported this fresh stepping in January (link below). ® Related Stories Muddle erupts over dual CPU Intel platform Intel to make major Cumine stepping change 7 April Intel erratum-not-bug not-good-enough Intel moves to re-assure industry on bugs

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