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Encyclopedia > Intel Core microarchitecture


The Intel Core microarchitecture (previously known as the Intel Next-Generation Micro-Architecture, or NGMA) is a multi-core processor microarchitecture unveiled by Intel in Q1 2006. It is based around an updated version of the Yonah core and could be considered the latest iteration of the Intel P6 microarchitecture, which traces its history back to the 1995 Pentium Pro. The extreme power consumption of NetBurst-based products and the resulting inability to effectively increase clock speed was the primary reason Intel abandoned the NetBurst architecture. The Intel Core Microarchitecture was designed by the team that previously designed the highly successful Pentium M mobile processor. CPU redirects here. ... Microarchitecture consists of a set of microprocessor design techniques used to implement the instruction set (including microcode, pipelining, cache systems, etc. ... Intel Corporation (NASDAQ: INTC, SEHK: 4335), founded in 1968 as Integrated Electronics Corporation, is an American multinational corporation that is best known for designing and manufacturing microprocessors and specialized integrated circuits. ... 2006 (MMVI) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... This article is about Intel processors branded as Intel Core, such as the 65 nanometre processor codenamed Yonah and its variants. ... The P6 microarchitecture is the sixth generation x86 microprocessor architecture of Intel, released in 1995. ... 1995 (MCMXCV) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Pentium Pro 256 KB Pentium Pro 512 KB Pentium Pro 1 MB Pentium Pro underside (256/512) Pentium II Overdrive The Pentium Pro is a sixth-generation x86 architecture microprocessor (P6 core) by Intel originally intended to replace the original Pentium in a full range of applications, but later reduced... The Intel NetBurst Microarchitecture, called P68 inside Intel, is the successor to the P6 microarchitecture in the x86 family of CPUs made by Intel. ... In synchronous digital electronics, such as most computers, a clock signal is a signal used to coordinate the actions of two or more circuits. ... Introduced in March 2003, the Pentium M is an x86 architecture microprocessor designed and manufactured by Intel. ...


The architecture features lower power usage than before and is competitive with AMD in heat production. It has multiple cores and hardware virtualisation support (marketed as Virtualization Technology), as well as EM64T and SSSE3. x86 virtualization is the method by which the x86 processor architecture is virtualized. ... Extended Memory 64-bit Technology (EM64T) is Intels implementation of AMD64, a 64-bit extension to the IA-32 architecture. ... Supplemental Streaming SIMD Extension 3 (SSSE3)[1] is Intels name for the SSE instruction sets fourth iteration, as they appear to consider it merely a revision of SSE3. ...


The first processors that used this architecture were code-named Merom, Conroe, and Woodcrest; Merom is for mobile computing, Conroe is for desktop systems, and Woodcrest is for servers and workstations. While architecturally identical, the three product lines differ in the socket used, bus speed, and power consumption. Core-based products are not branded Pentium; Woodcrest-based products form the Xeon 5100 series, while Conroe and Merom-based processors are labeled as Core 2. Intel introduced the brand name Pentium for its successor to the i486. ... Xeon logo as of 2006. ...

Contents

Technology

The Intel Core Microarchitecture is designed from the ground up, but similar to the Pentium M microarchitecture in design philosophy. The pipeline is 14 stages long — less than half of Prescott's, a signature feature of wide order execution cores. Core's execution unit is 4-issues wide, compared to the 3-issue cores of P6, P-M (Banias, Dothan, and Yonah), and NetBurst microarchitectures. The new architecture is a dual core design with linked L1 cache and shared L2 cache engineered for maximum performance per watt and improved scalability. Introduced in March 2003, the Pentium M is an x86 architecture microprocessor designed and manufactured by Intel. ... New Intel Pentium 4 with Hyper Threading logo The Pentium 4 is a seventh-generation x86 architecture microprocessor produced by Intel and is their first all-new CPU design, called the NetBurst architecture, since the Pentium Pro of 1995. ... The P6 microarchitecture is the sixth generation x86 microprocessor architecture of Intel, released in 1995. ... Introduced in March 2003, the Pentium M is an x86 architecture microprocessor designed and manufactured by Intel. ... The Intel NetBurst Microarchitecture, called P68 inside Intel, is the successor to the P6 microarchitecture in the x86 family of CPUs made by Intel. ... Diagram of a CPU memory cache A CPU cache is a cache used by the central processing unit of a computer to reduce the average time to access memory. ... Diagram of a CPU memory cache A CPU cache is a cache used by the central processing unit of a computer to reduce the average time to access memory. ...


One new technology included in the design is Macro-Ops Fusion, which combines two x86 instructions into a single micro-operation. For example, a common code sequence like a compare followed by a conditional jump would become a single micro-op. x86 or 80x86 is the generic name of a microprocessor architecture first developed and manufactured by Intel. ... Micro-operations, also known as a micro-ops or μops, are simple, RISC-like microprocessor instructions used by some CISC processors to implement more complex instructions. ...


Other new technologies include 1 cycle throughput (2 cycles previously) of all 128-bit SSE instructions and a new power saving design. All components will run at minimum speed, ramping up speed dynamically as and when needed (similar to AMD's Cool'n'Quiet power-saving technology, as well as Intel's own SpeedStep technology from earlier mobile processors). This allows the chip to produce less heat, and consume as little power as possible. CoolnQuiet is a CPU speed throttling and power saving technology introduced by AMD with their Athlon 64 processor series. ... SpeedStepâ„¢ is a series of technologies (including SpeedStep, SpeedStep II, and SpeedStep III) built into some Intel processors. ...


For Woodcrest, the server and workstation variant, the front side bus (FSB) runs at 1333 MHz for most Woodcrest CPUs and 1066 MHz for the 1.60 and 1.86 GHz Woodcrest processors[1][2]. It is targeted to run at 667 MHz for Merom, the mobile variant. However the second wave of Meroms, supporting 800 MHz FSB, will be released on a different socket in early 2007. The desktop version is officially slated to use the 1066 MHz bus, with a later possibility of an Extreme Edition CPU with a 1333 MHz bus, and a future budget version with an 800 MHz FSB, but that would be slightly more limited due to its more restrictive bus. In computers, the front side bus (FSB) is a term for the physical bi-directional data bus that carries all electronic signal information between the central processing unit (CPU) and other devices within the system such as random access memory (RAM), the system BIOS, AGP video cards, PCI expansion cards... A megahertz (MHz) is one million (106) hertz, a measure of frequency. ... CPU can stand for: in computing: Central processing unit in journalism: Commonwealth Press Union in law enforcement: Crime prevention unit in software: Critical patch update, a type of software patch distributed by Oracle Corporation in Macleans College is often known as Ash Lim. ...


Some believe that the FSB will prove to be the weak link for Intel, as the Core microarchitecture uses a shared bus, unlike AMD's HyperTransport. While not so critical in the mobile and desktop segments, this might be the handicap which will prevent Woodcrest-MP from taking performance leadership from AMD Opteron on systems with more than 2 cores per socket. Intel attempted to alleviate this problem by the use of advanced prefetchers and memory disambiguation which try to hide main-memory-access latency. However, this is mitigated to some degree by the use of a separate front-side bus for each physical CPU package. Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. ... HyperTransport logo HyperTransport (HT), formerly known as Lightning Data Transport (LDT), is a bidirectional serial/parallel high-bandwidth, low-latency computer bus that was introduced on April 2, 2001 [1]. The HyperTransport Technology Consortium is in charge of promoting and developing HyperTransport technology. ... The AMD Opteron (codenamed SledgeHammer during development) was the first of AMDs eighth-generation x86 processors based on the K8 or Hammer core, and the first processor to implement the AMD64 (formerly x86-64) instruction set architecture. ... Memory disambiguation is a set of techniques employed by high-performance out-of-order execution microprocessors that execute memory access instructions (loads and stores) out of program order. ... Latency is a time delay between the moment something is initiated, and the moment one of its effects begins. ...


The power consumption of these new processors is extremely low — average use energy consumption is to be in the 1-2 watt range in ultra low voltage variants, with Thermal Design Powers (TDPs) of 65 watts for Conroe and most Woodcrests, 80 watts for the 3.0 GHz Woodcrest, and 40 watts for the low-voltage Woodcrest. However, this is subject to change. In comparison, an AMD Opteron 875HE processor consumes 55 watts, while the new Energy Efficient Socket AM2 line fits in the 35 watt thermal envelope (specified a different way so not directly comparable). Merom, the mobile variant, is listed at 35 watts Thermal Design Power (TDP) for standard versions and 5 watts TDP for Ultra Low Voltage (ULV) versions. The Thermal Design Power (TDP) represents the maximum amount of power the thermal solution in a computer system is required to dissipate. ... The AMD Opteron (codenamed SledgeHammer during development) was the first of AMDs eighth-generation x86 processors based on the K8 or Hammer core, and the first processor to implement the AMD64 (formerly x86-64) instruction set architecture. ... The Socket AM2, renamed from Socket M2 (to prevent using the same name as Cyrix MII processors), is a CPU socket designed by AMD for desktop processors, including the performance, mainstream and value segments. ... The Thermal Design Power (TDP) represents the maximum amount of power the thermal solution in a computer system is required to dissipate. ...


Previously, Intel warned that it would now focus on power efficiency, rather than raw performance. However, at IDF in the spring of 2006, Intel advertised both. Some of the promised numbers are: Intel Developer Forum (IDF), is a twice yearly gathering of technologists to discuss Intel products and products based around Intel products. ...

  • 20% more performance for Merom at the same power level (compared to Core Duo)
  • 40% more performance for Conroe at 40% less power (compared to Pentium D)
  • 80% more performance for Woodcrest at 35% less power (compared to the original dual-core Xeon)

It has been suggested that this article or section be merged into Intel Core. ... Pentium D logo as of 2006. ... Xeon logo as of 2006. ...

Current products

Laptops

Core 2 Duo brand logo Core 2 Extreme brand logo Core 2 is an eighth-generation x86 architecture microprocessor produced by Intel and based on the Intel Core microarchitecture. ... The 65 nanometer (65 nm) process is (as of 2006) the most advanced lithographic node for volume semiconductor manufacturing, however it will soon be eclipsed when 45 nanometer lithography becomes commercially viable. ... A gigahertz is a billion hertz or a thousand megahertz, a measure of frequency. ... Megatransfer is a term used in computer technology, referring to a number of data transfers (or operations). ... FSB may stand for one of the following. ...

Desktops

Core 2 Duo brand logo Core 2 Extreme brand logo Core 2 is an eighth-generation x86 architecture microprocessor produced by Intel and based on the Intel Core microarchitecture. ... A gigahertz is a billion hertz or a thousand megahertz, a measure of frequency. ... Core 2 Duo brand logo Core 2 Extreme brand logo Core 2 is an eighth-generation x86 architecture microprocessor produced by Intel and based on the Intel Core microarchitecture. ...

Servers and workstations

  • Woodcrest - Xeon E51XX, 65 nm, dual-core, 1.60-3.0 GHz, 1333 MT/s FSB, 4 MiB L2 cache
  • Clovertown - Xeon E53XX, 65 nm, quad-core (based on Kentsfield), 1.60-2.66 GHz, 1066-1333 MT/s FSB, 2 × 4 MiB L2 cache
  • Kentsfield - Xeon E32XX, 65 nm, quad-core (rebadged Kentsfield), 2.13-2.40 GHz, 1066 MT/s FSB, 2 × 4 MiB L2 cache

The Xeon is Intels current generation of server-class microprocessors for PCs. ... The Xeon is Intels current generation of server-class microprocessors for PCs. ... The Xeon is Intels current generation of server-class microprocessors for PCs. ...

Future products

Current event marker This article contains information about a scheduled or expected future product.
It may contain preliminary or speculative information, and may not reflect the final version of the product.

Image File history File links Current_event_marker. ...

Laptops

  • Stealey - 65 nm, single-core, 512 KiB L2 cache (mid 2007) [3]
  • Gilo - 65 nm, multi-core (Q4 2007) [4]
  • Penryn - 45 nm, dual-core, 3-6 MiB L2 cache (Q4 2007) [5]

The 65 nanometer (65 nm) process is (as of 2006) the most advanced lithographic node for volume semiconductor manufacturing, however it will soon be eclipsed when 45 nanometer lithography becomes commercially viable. ...

Desktops

  • Allendale, 65 nm, dual-core, cut-down Conroe (Q1 2007) [6]
  • Millville, 65 nm, single-core Allendale, 1 MiB L2 cache (Q1 2007)
  • Yorkfield, 45 nm, quad-core, 1066-1333 MT/s FSB, 2 × 6 MiB L2 cache (Q3 2007) [7]
  • Wolfdale, 45 nm, dual-core, 1066-1333 MT/s FSB, 6MiB L2 cache (Q3 2007) [8]

FSB may stand for one of the following. ...

Servers and workstations

  • Clovertown-MP, MP-capable version of Clovertown [9]
  • Tigerton, quad-core successor to Clovertown-MP (to be released in place of the cancelled "Whitefield" [10]) [11]
  • Harpertown, either a dual-core, 45 nm shrink of Woodcrest [12], or an eight-core, 45 nm MCM with 12 MiB L2 [13]
  • Dunnington, four-to-eight cores, successor to Tigerton [14] [15]
  • Aliceton, also a successor to Tigerton [16]

See also

This generational and chronological list of Intel microprocessors attempts to present all of Intels processors (µPs) from the pioneering 4-bit 4004 (1971) to the present high-end offerings, the 64-bit Itanium 2 (2002) and Intel Core 2 and Xeon 5100 and 7100 series processors (2006). ... The P6 microarchitecture is the sixth generation x86 microprocessor architecture of Intel, released in 1995. ... The Intel NetBurst Microarchitecture, called P68 inside Intel, is the successor to the P6 microarchitecture in the x86 family of CPUs made by Intel. ...

References

  • Intel Core Microarchitecture website
  • Intel press release announcing plans for a new microarchitecture
  • Intel press release introducing the Core Microarchitecture
  • Intel processor roadmap
  • Intel names the Core Microarchitecture
  • Pictures of processors using the Core Microarchitecture, among others (also first mention of Clovertown-MP)
  • IDF keynotes, advertising the performance of the new processors
  • The Core of Intel's new chips
  • RealWorld Tech's overview of the Core microarchitecture
  • Detailed overview of the Core microarchitecture at Ars Technica
  • Intel Core versus AMD's K8 architecture at Anandtech
  • Release dates of upcoming Intel Core processors using the Intel Core Microarchitecture
  • Benchmarks Compairing the Computational Power of Core Architeture against Older Intel Netburst and AMD Athlon64 Central Processing Units

 
 

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