Feeds

AMD demos four-core Opteron

Going native in Barcelona

Gartner critical capabilities for enterprise endpoint backup

AMD has demo'd its upcoming quad-core Opteron server processor, a few days after launching the gamer-oriented Quad FX, which despite its name is a dual-core part.

The CPU, codenamed 'Barcelona', was announced in October this year at the Fall Processor Forum. Then, AMD said the chip would incorporate a doubling of the width of the bus feeding the chip's vector processing engine to 128 bits, and an upgraded memory controller design which can handle FB-DIMM and DDR 3 memory.

Barcelona contains 2MB of L3 cache shared among the four cores, each of which has 512KB of L2 cache all to itself. The chip also incorporates hardware-controlled memory page nesting to accelerate the manipulation of memory addresses when the CPU's virtualisation technology is in operation, AMD has said in the past.

AMD's quad-core Opteron isn't due to ship until mid-2007, some six months after Intel's quad-core Xeons, which were launched last month. AMD's pitch is that its chips are 'true' quad-core processors: four cores on a single die, whereas Intel's are an assembly of two dual-core chips.

That may be true, but it's also irrelevant. What matters is performance, and if Intel can deliver more productive quad-core CPUs than its dual-core range now while AMD waits until it can ship a 'native' product, it has the edge.

Ultimately, the CPU is a black box that gets work done. How it does so only matters as far as the performance it delivers relative to contemporaneously shipping rival products. In that sense, the 'native' vs 'non-native' is a red herring, until AMD takes its products to market and demonstrates its approach delivers the best performance at that time. ®

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

More from The Register

next story
Raspberry Pi B+: PHWOAR, get a load of those pins
More USB ports than your laptop? You'd better believe it...
So, Apple won't sell cheap kit? Prepare the iOS garden wall WRECKING BALL
It can throw the low cost race if it looks to the cloud
Reg man looks through a Glass, darkly: Google's toy ploy or killer tech specs?
Tip: Put the shades on and you'll look less of a spanner
Apple promises to lift Curse of the Drained iPhone 5 Battery
Have you tried turning it off and...? Never mind, here's a replacement
Now that's FIRE WIRE: HP recalls 6 MILLION burn-risk laptop cables
Right in the middle of Burning Mains Man week
Apple's iWatch? They cannae do it ... they don't have the POWER
Analyst predicts fanbois will have to wait until next year
Super Cali signs a kill-switch, campaigners say it's atrocious
Remote-death button bad news for crooks, protesters – and great news for hackers?
HUGE iPAD? Maybe. HUGE ADVERTS? That's for SURE
Noo! Hand not big enough! Don't look at meee!
prev story

Whitepapers

Best practices for enterprise data
Discussing how technology providers have innovated in order to solve new challenges, creating a new framework for enterprise data.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Advanced data protection for your virtualized environments
Find a natural fit for optimizing protection for the often resource-constrained data protection process found in virtual environments.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?