News
 

Bookmark and Share

(2) 

Nvidia Corp. and Portland Group last week introduced a special compiler that can make software originally developed for Nvidia CUDA architecture to x86 and presumably vice versa. This allows software developers to ensure broad compatibility of their programs and offer certain advantages for highly-parallel GPU architecture. However, it will hardly make the life of software makers much easier, according to Alex Herrera, an analyst with Jon Peddie Research.

There are many reasons why different applications, including those in supercomputer space, are not remade for graphics processors, such as ATI Radeon or Nvidia GeForce, despite of bright prospects of higher performance. One of the main reasons is legacy code that continues to be used and that will hardly be dropped since it does already work. The compiler jointly developed by PGI and Nvidia will allow developers to test the CUDA-based software approach on x86 platforms and determine its reliability. Nonetheless, it may work stably enough, but performance of CUDA-based software on x86 will hardly be optimal, claims Mr. Herrera.

Just like GPU-based Nvidia's PhysX tools that rely on CUDA do not support SIMD extensions like SSE2, the new compiler may not support things like AVX found in AMD Bulldozer and Intel Sandy Bridge microprocessors. As a result, the application will not run with maximum possible performance on x86 platforms.

"CUDA on x86 is going to be slower than an application optimized to run on x86 without CUDA, probably a lot slower. So a developer running a CUDA application on x86 and then on Fermi is going to see a larger speed-up than he might otherwise have had had he first optimized on a conventional, non-CUDA x86 platform. Bigger speedup numbers serve Nvidia’s purposes of showcasing how much faster GPUs are than CPUs on many floating-point intensive applications," said the analyst.

In the end, designers of both special-purpose and commercial software for consumers will still have to implement different code-paths for different hardware, something that they already do.

Tags: Nvidia, x86, CUDA, Bulldozer, AVX, JPR, Geforce, Radeon, OpenCL

Discussion

Comments currently: 2
Discussion started: 09/29/10 02:16:13 AM
Latest comment: 09/29/10 05:49:08 AM

[1-2]

1. 
Yes, in the last ten years, you could say that compilers were everything. The fact that Intel's compilers are the most popular and AMD has no compiler of its own, proved to be very detrimental for AMD's performance and AMD users in general as Intel has done quite few tricks just to make AMD performance worse in any application compiled with an Intel compiler.
0 0 [Posted by: East17  | Date: 09/29/10 02:16:13 AM]
Reply

2. 
So like, putting lipstick on the pig, except they cheated out on the lipstick.

Why am I not surprised? They hobble PhysX for the CPU, disable it when there is a non nVidia GPU in the system, and now they pull this kind of crap.

If I was a programmer/dev, I'd be pretty pissed off by that.
0 0 [Posted by: RtFusion  | Date: 09/29/10 05:49:08 AM]
Reply

[1-2]

Add your Comment




Related news

Latest News

Thursday, August 21, 2014

10:59 pm | Khronos Group to Follow DirectX 12 with Cross-Platform Low-Level API. Khronos Unveils Next-Generation OpenGL Initiative

10:33 pm | Avexir Readies 3.40GHz DDR4 Memory Modules. DDR4 Could Hit 3.40GHz This Year

12:10 pm | AMD to Lower Prices of A-Series APUs for Back-to-School Season. New Prices of AMD A-Series APUs Revealed

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

10:53 am | AMD to Cut Prices on FX-9000, Other FX Processors: New Prices Revealed. AMD to Make FX Chips More Affordable, Discontinue Low-End Models

10:32 am | LG to Introduce World’s First Curved 21:9 Ultra-Wide Display. LG Brings Curved Displays to Gamers, Professionals

9:59 am | AMD Readies FX-8370, FX-8370E Microprocessors. AMD Preps Two New “Mainstream” FX Chips