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Intel Corp. is expected to release its first dual-core microprocessor-based server platforms on Monday, 11th of July, 2005, according to sources with knowledge of the matter. The new machines running one chip with two processing engines may offer performance similar to servers running two previous generation central processing units.

Intel’s server platform to be based on its dual-core processors Pentium D and Pentium Extreme Edition will include new E7230 chipset, which was previously code-named Mukilteo. The new core-logic will support processors with up to 1066MHz processor system bus, up to 8GB PC2-5300 (DDR2 667MHz), PCI Express x1 and x4 slots, PCI-X slots, Serial ATA with RAID support as well as some other server-specific things.

The new server platform is primarily aimed at blade as well as small form-factor servers and will succeed succeed uni-processor server platforms featuring Intel Pentium 4 processors and E7221 chipsets. Furthermore, the platform is likely to offer a very powerful option for those looking for 2P server machine: a single Intel Pentium dual-core chip at up to 3.20GHz and appropriate mainboard definitely cost less than two Intel Xeon server chips and corresponding platform, furthermore, it consumes less power too. Intel’s dual-core chips consume up to 130W each, Intel’s latest Xeon processors with 2MB of cache have thermal design power of 110W, which means that Intel Pentium Extreme Edition processor 840 has higher performance per watt compared to the modern Intel Xeon chips.

Intel recently submitted SPEC CPU2000 benchmark results of Intel Pentium 4 Extreme Edition processor 840 and D955XCV mainboard to web-site. The dual-core Pentium-based system scored 30.5/30.5 base/peak CFP2000 rates and 33.1/33.3 base/peak CINT2000 rates. By contrast, HP’s ProLiant DL360 G4p server with Intel Xeon 3.60GHz processors scored 30.2/30.9 base/peak in CFP2000 and 39.9/40.5 base/peak in CINT2000. HP’s ProLiant machine was equipped with 4GB of PC2-3200 (CL3) memory, while Intel’s machine was equipped with 1GB of PC2-5400 (CL5) memory. The results emphasize that thanks to higher-speed memory sub-system on Intel’s latest 955X chipset floating point performance of a 3.20GHz dual-core processor with 2MB of cache in total is higher than that of two single-core 3.60GHz chips with 4MB of cache in total. Integer performance, however, is higher on 2-way system due to higher clock-speed.

Intel’s forthcoming server platform consisting of Intel dual-core Pentium processor and Intel Mukilteo chipset will offer higher performance per watt and higher overall floating point performance compared to Intel Xeon-based 2-way servers. That, however, is unlikely to last long as in 2006 Intel Corp. aims to release its dual-core Intel Xeon processors and Intel Xeon processors MP code-named Dempsey and Paxville respectively in 2006. But those chips are projected to reshuffle the market of multiprocessor servers, for instance, HP already rejected plans to make 8-way servers based on the recently unveiled Intel Xeon processors MP.

Intel Corp. did not comment on the news-story.


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