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AMD Hardware

AMD's Six-Core Istanbul Opterons 123

EconolineCrush writes "AMD's latest 'Istanbul' Opterons add two cores per socket, for a grand total of six. Despite the extra cores, these new chips reside within the same power envelope as existing quad-core Opterons, and they're drop-in compatible with current systems. The Tech Report has an in-depth review of the new chips, comparing their performance and power efficiency with that of Intel's Nehalem-based Xeons. Istanbul fares surprisingly well, particularly when one considers its performance-power ratio with highly parallelized workloads."
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AMD's Six-Core Istanbul Opterons

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  • by IYagami ( 136831 ) on Tuesday June 02, 2009 @09:24AM (#28181029) []

    Includes information about virtualization performance: []

    "The six-core Opteron is not an alternative to the mighty Xeons in every application. The Xeons are more versatile thanks to the higher clockspeeds, higher IPC, Hyperthreading and higher bandwidth to memory. The Xeon 55xx series is clearly the better choice in OLTP, ERP, webserving, rendering and there is little doubt that it will continue to reign in the bandwidth intensive HPC workloads. There are two types of applications where we feel that the AMD six-core deserves your attention: decision support databases and virtualization."

  • Re:Only five blades? (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 02, 2009 @10:11AM (#28181613)
    I'm a chinese guy. I'd get my beard from the costume shop if I want one.
  • Re:EPT? (Score:4, Informative)

    by KonoWatakushi ( 910213 ) on Tuesday June 02, 2009 @10:20AM (#28181767)

    AMD has supported nested page tables since the Shanghai series processors.

  • 'so what' is that : (Score:3, Informative)

    by unity100 ( 970058 ) on Tuesday June 02, 2009 @10:21AM (#28181787) Homepage Journal

    ancient egypt is THE source of many of your philosophies and sciences. from 1000 BC and onwards, early greeks were coming to egypt for education. egypt had 2 schools - school of life, and school of death. school of life was teaching stuff related to this world, ie, medicine, land registry, writing, government, and school of death taught stuff pertaining to abstract world. not to mention that many of the professions people identify themselves today originated in egypt.

    even before knossos was known, medicine men and wise men of egypt were world renowned, even legendary in their time. a LOT of stuff that is ascribed to greeks were what greeks learned in egypt.

    brush up on your history.

  • by markhahn ( 122033 ) on Tuesday June 02, 2009 @11:19AM (#28182865)

    the real news here is not the extra couple cores, but coherency snooping. this feature will make 4/8s machines far more attractive; it doesn't hurt that with 48 cores and 32 ddr3/1333 dimms, you have quite a monster. _and_ incidentally something that Intel can't currently answer.

    there's no question that nehalem has put a serious dent in the market, but Intel's going quite slow in rolling out higher-end products. yes, a nehalem socket delivers about 50% more bandwidth than a current opteron socket, but show me the 8s nehalem machines. nehalem-ex is coming, but how soon and at what price?

    one thing I haven't seen is any attempt to measure real SMP performance on new-gen chips. I don't mean something like Stream or VMs, where there is no real sharing inherent to the workload. how long does it take to exchange a _contended_ lock between cores (in the same socket vs remote)?

    finally, the real question is whether there is actual demand for more-core chips. I'm in HPC, and we always want more, and throw good money. but it has to be smart more - the 6-core core2, for instance, was just asinine because even 2c core2 is drastically memory-bandwidth-starved. nehalem-ex seems quite promising, but if it's cheaper to cluster dual-socket machines rather than pay the premium for 4s's, the 4s market will be stunted and less successful in a self-fulfilling way...

  • Re:No. (Score:5, Informative)

    by default luser ( 529332 ) on Tuesday June 02, 2009 @12:12PM (#28183715) Journal

    You've already made this comment before, and I've already responded, so I'll keep it short and sweet.

    If you're using a slow 2.2 GHz Quad core, that's not the fault of the industry, that's the fault of YOU. I have already made it clear that the top-end Core 2 Duo chips [] would run circles around your P4, but apparently you'd prefer to pretend they don't exist. As for your dog-slow quad core, that was YOUR purchasing decision. You can purchase MUCH FASTER [] quad cores [] today for reasonable prices, but apparently you're still suck in the year 2006.

    The reason Core 2 / Quad destroys the P4 despite having a slower clock speed: Core 2 ups the Instructions Per Clock versus the Pentium 4. The increase is between %60 and %100 more IPC. If you read my previous response to you on the subject [], you'd actually know that, instead of continuing to spout your ignorant bullshit.

    And if you can't find a video codec with multiple core support, you're looking in the wrong place. Video decode is one of those embarrassingly-easy things to parallelize, and so your "boast" is really just outing you as a lazy bastard who can't take five seconds to search Google.

  • by PeeAitchPee ( 712652 ) on Tuesday June 02, 2009 @01:17PM (#28184593)

    We run a lot of commerical OCR (as in millions of images), which is extremely processor-intensive, disk-intensive, memory-intensive, you name it. Our current main OCR server is a dual quad-core Xeon X5355 box with 16 GB of RAM. Our OCR software multithreads and the processor is no longer the bottleneck -- it's now disk I/O. While current drives continue to increase in size, their read / write speed is what keeps us from getting work done faster. It now takes several orders of magnitude longer to build, and then export, for example, a 2 GB batch than it does to recognize it, and the holdup is entirely due to disk I/O.

    SSDs help. We recently upgraded our server's OS drive to two Intel Extreme 64GB SSDs in RAID 0 (also using part of the array as a "scratchpad" for the OCR batches), and that cut the disk I/O time approximately in half -- but we're still talking almost an hour for your typical 2 GB batch. Time is money, and we'd gladly throw more money at faster infrastructure were it available. SSDs are still way too expensive to replace our existing main storage arrays, though.

    So, while I appreciate continuing work in processor speed and density, I'd say I'd rather see a commensurate increase (and reduction in cost!) in disk speed at this point. Just my .02.

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