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Current Operating Systems May Only Make Sense Up To 48 Cores

Oct 01, 2010, 13:32 (3 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Kurt Bakke)

"Adding cores to the CPU has become the general recipe to ensure performance improvements in modern computers, even if we have heard before than the IT industry will face efficiency problems beyond 16 cores. New research published by MIT now suggests that the industry will be running into a soft wall when 48 cores are reached and new operating system architectures may be required.

"The number of cores in modern CPUs has grown much slower than we initially anticipated. The first mainstream quad-core processor (Intel Kentsfield), followed just 18 months after the release of the first dual-core processor (Intel Smithfield) in May 2005 and haven't changed much since then. Six physical cores (and 12 threads) is the top of the range at Intel, while AMD has 12 cores available right now, but is talking about up to 16 cores in the not too distant future.

"Intel has said in the past that, beyond 16 cores, it appears that much of the performance gain efficiency from the pure addition of cores may be gone and improving software that takes advantages of these cores may become much more important."

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