Intel Readies Ten-Core Microprocessor for Servers

Intel Preps Ten-Core Westmere Chip

by Anton Shilov
06/22/2010 | 02:28 PM

Intel Corp. has confirmed plans to release ten-core microprocessor for servers based on the code-named Westmere micro-architecture. The chip is likely to be released next year and Intel will disclose details about it this August.

 

On the 24th of August, 2010, the world’s largest maker of central processing units will reveal details about its ten-core chip code-named Westmere-EX at the Hot Chips conference. At present only rumours exist about the microprocessor and the program of the symposium is the first official confirmation that the chip exists in plans. Regrettably, Intel did not reveal any additional information about the chip in the description of its presentation.

At present Intel sells eight-core Xeon MP microprocessor originally code-named Nehalem-EX. It is noteworthy that the chip emerged about one and a half years after the original Nehalem processor for high-end desktops and dual-chip servers, whereas Westmere-EX is likely to emerge sometime in the first half of 2011, about a year after the first Westmere chip code-named Gulftown.

The ten-core Westmere microprocessor will be able to process up to twenty threads of code at once thanks to Hyper-Threading technology. It will also support such capabilities as AES-NI, which improves performance in security applications. The chip will be made using 32nm fabrication process.

Even though ten processing engines is a remarkable number, the arch-rival of Intel – Advanced Micro Devices – will release server chips with up to sixteen cores based on the new code-named Bulldozer micro-architecture next year. While at present Intel’s multi-processor server platform offers a number of advantages compared to AMD’s it remains to be seen whether those advantages will be enough to compete against sixteen-core chips using a ten-core CPU in 2011.