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AMD engineers reveal details about the company's upcoming 45nm processor roadmap, including plans for 12-core processors

"Shanghai! Shanghai!" the reporters cry during the AMD's financial analyst day today. Despite the fact that the company will lay off nearly 5% of its work force this week, followed by another 5% next month, most employees interviewed by DailyTech continue to convey an optimistic outlook.

The next major milestone for the CPU engineers comes late this year, with the debut of 45nm Shanghai. Shanghai, for all intents and purposes, is nearly identical to the B3 stepping of Socket 1207 Opteron (Barcelona) shipping today.  However, where as Barcelona had its HyperTransport 3.0 clock generator fused off, Shanghai will once again attempt to get HT3.0 right.

Original roadmaps anticipated that HT3.0 would be used for socket-to-socket communication, but also for communication to the Southbridge controllers. Motherboard manufacturers have confirmed that this is no longer the case, and that HT3.0 will only be used for inter-CPU communication.

"Don't be disappointed, AMD is making up for it," hints one engineer.  Further conversations revealed that inter-CPU communication is going to be a big deal with the 45nm refresh.  The first breadcrumb comes with a new "native six-core" Shanghai derivative, currently codenamed Istanbul.  This processor is clearly targeted at Intel's recently announced six-core, 45nm Dunnington processor.

But sextuple-core processors have been done, or at least we'll see the first ones this year.  The real neat stuff comes a few months after, where AMD will finally ditch the "native-core" rhetoric.  Two separate reports sent to DailyTech from AMD partners indicate that Shanghai and its derivatives will also get twin-die per package treatment.  

AMD planned twin-die configurations as far back as the K8 architecture, though abandoned those efforts.  The company never explained why those processors were nixed, but just weeks later "native quad-core" became a major marketing campaign for AMD in anticipation of Barcelona.

A twin-die Istanbul processor could enable 12 cores in a single package. Each of these cores will communicate to each other via the now-enabled HT3.0 interconnect on the processor.  

The rabbit hole gets deeper.  Since each of these processors will contain a dual-channel memory controller, a single-core can emulate quad-channel memory functions by accessing the other dual-channel memory controller on the same socket.  This move is likely a preemptive strike against Intel's Nehalem tri-channel memory controller.
 
Motherboard manufacturers claim Shanghai and its many-core derivatives will be backwards compatible with existing Socket 1207 motherboards.  However, processor-to-processor communication will downgrade to lower HyperTransport frequencies on these older motherboards. The newest 1207+ motherboards will officially support the HyperTransport 3.0 frequencies.

Shanghai is currently taped out and running Windows at AMD.


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RE: Not the correct multiple prefix
By Zurtex on 4/18/2008 12:50:58 PM , Rating: 2
dodeca- is the Latin derivative prefix for 12

hendeca- is the Greek derivative prefix for 12

duodec- isn't a prefix at all

duodeci-, Wikipedia tells me is 1/12, although I always thought it was 1/5, will consult my geometry books later.

So:

dual-core
tri-core
quad-core
etc...
dodeca-core

Is entirely consistent.


RE: Not the correct multiple prefix
By wordsworm on 4/18/2008 1:05:21 PM , Rating: 2
http://www.wordinfo.info/words/index/info/view_uni...

Also, you can find it at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dodeca

As far as duodecima is concerned, I found this link: http://bartelby.org/81/5503.html

If you follow the Wiki article, it states that the Greeks would have gone the route of di (2), tetra (4)... dodeca, whereas the Latin is listed as duo (2), quad (4), ... duodec. Are we not looking at the same wiki article? I'm not sure how it is were getting completely different information from the same source.

In any case, going Latin and then changing into Greek doesn't make much sense. Are there any Latin/Greek professors out there who can trump wordinfo.com + wikipedia.org?


RE: Not the correct multiple prefix
By Zurtex on 4/18/2008 1:09:28 PM , Rating: 2
Oh wow, I look stupid now, getting confused with the 11 prefix :=/

At least dodeca is the most common ussage.


By wordsworm on 4/18/2008 1:18:41 PM , Rating: 2
I think someone's got to tell Kris though, to save him the embarrassment of going Greek. I couldn't find any instances of either prefix being used in conjunction with a CPU. My fear is that the whole Internet might follow Kris's lead, and then it will be discovered that he got his Greek and Latin crossed... followed by youtube embarrassing films mocking our gentle blogger. Us blog followers must try to help defend the honor of DT's reputation... and stick to the Latin... before it's too late!


RE: Not the correct multiple prefix
By Zurtex on 4/18/2008 1:14:48 PM , Rating: 2
Yeah, sorry, my main mistake is getting mixed up with 11 sided objects, that's what made me think dodeca- was latin and not greek.

If you look at the columns carefully, you'll notice the most common usage of each multiple-prefix switches between Greek and Latin. The most common one for 12 is dodeca-

duodeci- seems to always be used in the context of "divided by 12" so Wiki seems to be right in it meaning 1/12.


By wordsworm on 4/18/2008 1:23:52 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
duodeci- seems to always be used in the context of "divided by 12" so Wiki seems to be right in it meaning 1/12.


You're right that it seems to be 1/12. However, duo would be 1/2, quad 1/4 (in Latin of course). So, going duodec (not duodeci) would be consistent with the naming convention that Intel seems to be establishing. Well, I think it will sound cool again once it hits centicore and millicore. I think when it hits centicore in 5 years or so I'll be ready to upgrade from this quad I've got now.


RE: Not the correct multiple prefix
By jgp on 4/20/2008 4:45:29 PM , Rating: 2
Mixing Latin and Greek is a tech tradition.

"Hexadecimal" is mixed Latin-Greek, and it's used everywhere.


By wordsworm on 4/22/2008 11:22:22 PM , Rating: 2
Good point. They should stick to sexidecimal to keep things pure.


RE: Not the correct multiple prefix
By fsardis on 4/18/2008 5:02:37 PM , Rating: 2
both hendeca and dodeka are greek dude. its for 11 and 12.


By makedonas on 4/25/2008 5:50:21 PM , Rating: 2
As Greek I usally count...

deka = 10
endeka=11
dodeka =12
Dekatria=13
dekatessera=14
and.....

there is no C in Grek language just S i sound

I think people are not aware that Latin and Greek are two diffferent languages


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