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Poll

Is Windows 8 worth it?


Windows 8 is great!

Back to Windows 7!

What is windows 8?



Posted by Christo [PCD]
Votes: 109
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Hardware

Thursday 08 December 2011
AMD Launches 16 Core Interlagos Opteron Servers, Targets HPC, Cloud Computing
Christo [PCD] , Thursday 08 December 2011 - 13:08:17 //

500,000 cores already shipped since September

AMD launched its much anticipated Bulldozer architecture for the consumer market last month, but many were disappointed at the performance numbers. Now the company has officially launched new processors using the same architecture for the server and workstation markets, but things have changed significantly.

The key difference is in the software used to process instructions. The consumer side is reliant upon Windows 7 and earlier operating systems, which are unaware of the shared nature of the Bulldozer architecture. Resource sharing is inefficient at best, and the full possibilities of higher Turbo Core frequencies are missed.

AMD has worked to ensure optimization and/or support on many commonly used server operating systems. Linux 2.6.37, Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1, Xen 41, Ubuntu 11.04, and VMware vSphere 5.0 already have OS hypervisor support for Bulldozer, while others such as RedHat Enterprise Linux 6.2 and Windows 8 Server are currently in development.

AMD is specifically targeting the High Performance Computing (HPC) segment, with over 500,000 Bulldozer cores already shipped to this market since September. The AVX, FMA4, and XOP instructions require software to be recompiled in order to take advantage of their performance enhancements. Java 7 was mentioned as a program that was being worked on.

The Opteron 6200 series was formerly codenamed Interlagos. It is scalable to 4 sockets supporting 16 Bulldozer cores each. The fastest model is the 6282 SE at 2.6Ghz, with a maximum Turbo Core frequency of 3.3GHz and a TDP of 140W. The Opteron 4200 series was formerly codenamed Valencia. It is the most similar to the FX series (Zambezi) launched in October, but it will support up to 2 sockets with 8 cores each.

Both series support DDR3-1600 memory natively, but there will be official support for DDR3-1866 through specific OEMs. Opteron 6200 CPUs have quad memory channels, while the Opteron 4200 chips have dual channels. 1.35v low voltage memory and 1.25v ultra-low voltage memory is also supported, as are Load Reduced DIMMs (LRDIMMs).

The L1 cache is arranged as 16KB data per core and 64KB instruction per module, while the L2 cache is 1MB per core. Opteron 6200s have a shared 16MB of L3 cache per socket, while Opteron 4200s only have a shared 8MB per socket.

In order to speed time to market and lower validation costs, AMD has designed its new Opterons to function on its previous platforms using the G34 and C32 sockets. The company believes that its lower total platform costs over Intel’s Xeon platforms impart a significant advantage. For example, the AMD Opteron 6276 will ship at the same price as the Xeon E5640, but will outperform it by 89%.

Cloud computing requires high throughput, scalability, density, and power efficiency. AMD thinks that it can gain significant market share by claiming the lowest x86 watts/core in the industry at 5.3W for Interlagos and 4.375W for Valencia. The new C6 power state reduces power consumption at idle by up to 46% over the previous generation by enabling core power gating When a core is halted, its context is exported to system memory and voltage is removed from the core.

Intel will be launching new server and workstation products based on the Sandy Bridge architecture next year, but AMD also has plans for the future with its Piledriver architecture. Sepang will use the C2012 socket and replace the Opteron 6200 series, while Terramar will use the G2012 socket. Both new platforms will support PCIe 3.0.


[Submitted by Christo [PCD]]

1 1323341312 AMD La

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Thursday 27 October 2011
Faster Memory for Servers, Workstations Entering Mass Production
Christo [PCD] , Thursday 27 October 2011 - 11:06:57 //

Samsung, Hynix, and Micron preparing for the next generation

DDR3 SDRAM is now the standard memory for servers and workstations, but its supremacy was never assured. The introduction of Fully-Buffered DIMMs was slated as a substitute, but its high costs and power consumption heralded its doom. 1333MHz has been the top speed for servers using DDR3 during the last two and a half years, but things are about to change. A number of new product launches from Intel and AMD are leading to some faster memory from Samsung, Hynix, and Micron.

Although DDR3 was first introduced in 2007, it didn't make its way to servers until March 2009. Intel's 5500 series servers were the first to make use of DDR3's higher clocks speeds and lower power consumption, while AMD followed with its Socket AM3 quad-core Opterons, code-named "Suzuka."

AMD's FX series of CPUs using the Bulldozer core are the first to officially support DDR3-1866 at stock speeds. Although its performance was not as high as anticipated, there is a lot of interest in using the FX series in the workstation market due to ECC support in its dual channel integrated memory controller. Intel's Xeon processors are dominant in that market, but they are much more expensive.

Samsung is the largest DRAM manufacturer in the world, and is currently mass producing several DIMMs to address this opportunity. The most interesting is an 8GB unbuffered ECC DIMM (M391B1G73BH0-CMA), which uses 4Gb chips running at DDR3-1866 (PC3-14900). A fully populated AM3+ motherboard like the ASUS Crosshair V Formula would be able to address 32GB of this RAM. 4GB (M391B5273DH0-CMA), 2GB (M391B5773DH0-CMA), and 1GB (M391B2873GB0-CMA) capacities will also be available.

Hynix is currently sampling a similar 8GB ECC module (HMT41GU7MFR8C-RD), but 4GB (HMT351U7CFR8C-RD) and 2GB (HMT325U7CFR8C-RD) DIMMs are already in mass production. Micron, the last U.S.-based DRAM manufacturer, has similar products in the works as well. They declined to comment at this time, but they do have 2Gb DDR3-1866 chips in mass production. All three firms are utilizing a CAS latency of 13 at this speed.

AMD's upcoming 16 core Interlagos servers and some of Intel's Sandy Bridge-E server CPUs will feature quad-channel DDR3-1600 (PC3-12800) integrated memory controllers. This is the most lucrative market for Samsung, Hynix, and Micron. All three already have 16GB and smaller capacity ECC Registered DIMMs in mass production at that speed. Hynix is sampling a 32GB DIMM, while Micron has the only DIMMs with a CAS latency of 10.

Lower voltage (1.35v) versions of these DIMMs will be the most in demand due to their reduced power consumption. However, the largest servers will use Load Reduced DIMMS (LR-DIMMs). These are the successors to FBDIMMs, but without the problematic serial interface. In addition to the address signals normally buffered by registered DIMMs, LR-DIMMs also buffer the datalines. This allows the number of memory chips that can be used per channel to be greatly increased at the cost of additional latency. Servers using as much as 2TB of memory have been proposed using this technology.

Future server CPUs based on Ivy Bridge and Piledriver architectures are expected to make use of DDR3-1866 ECC Registered DIMMs or LR-DIMMs, and all three firms have plans for those as well. DDR3-1600 is a 20% increase in memory bandwidth over DDR3-1333, while DDR3-1866 is a 40% increase. Given the pace of memory advances in the server and workstation markets, these will have to do for the next couple of years.


[Submitted by Christo [PCD]]

1 1319706255 Faster

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Thursday 28 July 2011
Intel to Acquire Fulcrum Microsystems
Siversmith[PCD] , Thursday 28 July 2011 - 13:00:18 //

The new future for Intel?

“Intel is transforming from a leading server technology company to a comprehensive data center provider that offers computing, storage and networking building blocks,? said Kirk Skaugen, Intel vice president and general manager, Data Center Group. “Fulcrum Microsystems’ switch silicon, already recognized for high performance and low latency, complements Intel’s leading processors and Ethernet controllers, and will deliver our customers new levels of performance and energy efficiency while improving their economics of cloud service delivery.?

Looks like it could be a really good deal to me! I say watch this space as Intel as has the resources and man power to make news in the industry with this acquisition!

Source
[Submitted by Siversmith[PCD]]

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Thursday 14 July 2011
Should your next computer monitor be a TV?
Siversmith[PCD] , Thursday 14 July 2011 - 09:12:15 //

As of late PC LCD and LED screens have become really pricy. So much so that TV LCD and LED screens have become a lot cheaper in comparison. On mybroadband Jan Vermeulen goes in depth and explains his findings. Follow the link for his information.

http://mybroadband.co.za/news/hardware/28804-should-your-next-computer-monitor-be-a-tv.html
[Submitted by Siversmith[PCD]]

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Tuesday 11 January 2011
Ruiz lasted five years, Meyer only two and a half at chipmaker AMD
Dade_182 , Tuesday 11 January 2011 - 15:31:40 //

Advanced Micro Devices has struggled over the last few years. Despite having briefly seized the discrete graphics sales lead from NVIDIA (courtesy of acquisition ATI) and having its first competitive CPU product in a couple years (Fusion) in some regard (power efficiency), the chipmaker faces an uphill battle.

Though it beat analyst estimates, the company posted losses in Q2 and Q3 2010, after having enjoyed its first profitable quarters in some time in Q4 2009 and Q1 2010 (thanks in part to a $1.25B USD civil suit payout from rival Intel).

Now the company has announced [press release] that its Chief Executive Officer, Dirk Meyer will leave the company immediately as per a "mutual agreement" with the company's board of directors.

Bruce Claflin, chairman of the board since March 2009 comments on the split with Mr. Meyer, "Dirk became CEO during difficult times. He successfully stabilized AMD while simultaneously concluding strategic initiatives including the launch of GLOBALFOUNDRIES, the successful settlement of our litigation with Intel and delivering Fusion APUs to the market."

"However, the Board believes we have the opportunity to create increased shareholder value over time. This will require the company to have significant growth, establish market leadership and generate superior financial returns. We believe a change in leadership at this time will accelerate the company’s ability to accomplish these objectives."

Mr. Meyer had assumed the role of CEO in July 2008, placing his reign at just under two and a half years. He replaced Hector Ruiz, AMD's long-time chief from between 2002 to 2007. He was integral in orchestrating the closing of Mr. Ruiz's deal for ATI and smoothing the GPU and CPU divisions' integration and collaborative efforts.

Mr. Ruiz had been billed as the replacement for long-time CEO Jerry Sanders, who co-founded the company and served as President and CEO from between 1969 and 2002.

The CEO picture thus becomes somewhat unsettling for the chipmaker -- the original CEO stayed 23 years, the next 5, and the most recent a mere two and a half. This shortening longevity is almost certainly reflective of the company's growing struggles, similar to U.S. automaker General Motors' uncontrollably accelerating rate of CEO turnover.

Replacing Mr. Meyer is CFO and Senior Vice President Thomas Seifert, who will serve as interim CEO while a long term replacement is searched for. Mr. Claflin will lead the CEO search committee. An interim replacement CFO has not been announced -- Mr. Seifert will presumably hold down the positions of CEO and CFO.

Mr. Seifert promises to stay on course with the company's key objectives, commenting, "AMD enters 2011 with considerable product and financial momentum. Our roadmap for the year, including our "Llano" APU and 32nm "Bulldozer" based processors remain on track. I believe we have significant opportunities to cement our leadership positions in several key market segments based on the strength of our upcoming products."



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