With Hyper-Threading, A Single CPU Works Double-Time - InformationWeek

InformationWeek is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.


With Hyper-Threading, A Single CPU Works Double-Time

Intel's new technology promises up to 30% performance improvements

Intel's plan to introduce technology that lets a single processor take advantage of software designed for dual-processor environments could help the vendor maintain its lead over Advanced Micro Devices Inc. and challenge Sun Microsystems for a bigger share of the departmental server market.

Intel unveiled the technology, dubbed Hyper-Threading, last week at its developer forum. It's part of the chipmaker's campaign to build chips that have more to offer than simply raw speed. "We need to change the pattern of our investment ... and think beyond megahertz," Intel executive VP Paul Otellini said during his opening keynote at the San Jose, Calif., event.

Hyper-Threading could mean performance improvements of up to 30% vs. comparable Intel processors that don't use the technology, the company says. "It's an economical way of getting a significant bump in performance," says Tom Bradicich, chief technology officer for IBM's eServer xSeries Intel-based servers. Bradicich says IBM is seeing an average increase in application performance of 20% in test systems employing Hyper-Threading.

Chips equipped with the technology will be able to manage incoming data from different applications, continuously switching from one set of instructions to the other. Intel says a number of software developers, including Microsoft, have pledged support for Hyper-Threading, which will be available next year on Intel's 64-bit McKinley server and workstation processor.

Analysts say Intel may be on to something big. Hyper-Threading "gives Intel a chance to chew up the competition because it's a feature no one else has," says Rob Enderle, a Giga Information Group analyst. Hyper-Threading could make Intel processors more compelling than Sun's Risc-based UltraSparc chips, he says, though he cautions that the technology has yet to prove itself in the field.

For now, speed is still Intel's No. 1 weapon. Last week, the company demoed a Pentium 4 running at 3.5 GHz, and Otellini said Intel's current microprocessor architecture has the headroom to eventually hit 10 GHz.

We welcome your comments on this topic on our social media channels, or [contact us directly] with questions about the site.
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
State of the Cloud
State of the Cloud
Cloud has drastically changed how IT organizations consume and deploy services in the digital age. This research report will delve into public, private and hybrid cloud adoption trends, with a special focus on infrastructure as a service and its role in the enterprise. Find out the challenges organizations are experiencing, and the technologies and strategies they are using to manage and mitigate those challenges today.
AI Regulation: Has the Time Arrived?
John Edwards, Technology Journalist & Author,  2/24/2020
Fighting the Coronavirus with Analytics and GIS
Jessica Davis, Senior Editor, Enterprise Apps,  2/3/2020
IT Careers: 10 Job Skills in High Demand This Year
Cynthia Harvey, Freelance Journalist, InformationWeek,  2/3/2020
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
Current Issue
IT Careers: Tech Drives Constant Change
Advances in information technology and management concepts mean that IT professionals must update their skill sets, even their career goals on an almost yearly basis. In this IT Trend Report, experts share advice on how IT pros can keep up with this every-changing job market. Read it today!
White Papers
Twitter Feed
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.
Sponsored Video
Flash Poll