Intel Corp., the world’s leading supplier of x86 processors for servers, on Wednesday quietly released its new chips for dual-processor server machines. The new processors dubbed Xeon 5000-series contain two processing engines and made using 65nm process technology. The new chips, however, will not gain significant popularity on the market, according to earlier reports.
Without releasing any official statements, Intel added specifications of five new Intel Xeon processors for 2-way servers and workstations to the list of dual-core Xeon chips’ specs. The central processing units, which were earlier code-named Dempsey, support Intel virtualization technology, Intel Hyper-Threading technology, 64-bit capability and non-execute bit support.
Currently Intel offers Intel Xeon DP processor models 5030, 5050, 5060, 5063 and 5080, which operate at 2.67GHz, 3.00GHz, 3.20GHz, 3.20GHz and 3.73GHz, respectively. The new Xeon processors feature 4MB L2 cache (2MB cache per core), 667MHz (models 5050 and 5030 only) or 1066MHz processor system bus and use LGA771 form-factor. The models 5080 and 5060 have thermal design power of 130W, whereas the rest consume about 95W, according to the manufacturer. Along with the new processors, Intel releases its new server and workstation platforms code-named Bensley and Glidewell.
The Bensley platform is based on Intel 5000P (Blackford) and Intel 5000V (Blackford VS) chipsets that support dual-core processors, PC2-4300 FB-DIMM memory (up to 64GB by 5000P and up to 16GB by 5000V), Both core-logic sets support processors with 1066MHz and 1333MHz processor system bus. The Glidewell platform features the Intel 5000X (Greencreek) chipset, which, in addition to the capabilities mentioned above, brings support for PCI Express x16 bus required for graphics cards.
The main advantages of the new chips is support for virtualization technology, increased cache sizes as well as clock-speeds compared to previous-gen Xeon DP chips. However, Intel is expected to release even more advanced Intel Xeon 5100-series “Woodcrest” chips, which will be more powerful and will consume less energy.
Intel will ramp up Woodcrest chips very rapidly. Apparently, its code-named Dempsey processors, which are based on the NetBurst micro-architecture, will acquire only a little more than 10% of Intel Xeon DP platform sales in Q2 2006. Already in Q3 2006 the Bensley platform that supports Dempsey and Woodcrest will acquire over 60% of shipments as the code-named Woodcrest chips will be featured in little less than 50% of DP server platforms supplied by Intel (which means that Dempsey chips will be used in 10-15% of Xeon DP-based servers only). In Q4 2006 shipments of Intel dual-processor will consist of slightly less than 70% of Woodcrest chips and a little more than 30% of NetBurst-based processors. In Q1 2007 70% of the Intel Xeon DP market will belong to the Woodcrest, 10% will be owned by Clovertown and 20% will go to the NetBurst micro-architecture-based chips.