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Efficiency of processor

A processor is supposed to be the backbone of computer systems. Performance of computer systems is dependent on the efficiency of processor. As the processor is supposed to be the brain of computer, it controls and supervises each job that a computer carries out. The processor is selected based on computer’s speed, storage space in hard disk, compatibility, random access memory, etc. Today the advancement has reached to the fact that ten years back, processors used to run on 10MHz, and now this speed has reached 3 GHz or more. Intel and AMD are the two names which ensure best quality and technologically advanced processors.

Being the main competitors in the industry, they both are on the way to design best of the best systems ever in the history of computers (Build a Computer Guide 2006). Athlon and Duron are the names of two processors in AMD line of processors while Intel has introduced Celeron and Intel processors. In comparison Athlon XP 2000+ is similarly efficient like 1. 7 GHz Pentium 4. AMD is known for its speed and cheap prices while Intel has huge share of market and better business. Rating is done based on certain performance factors like bus speeds, clock cycles, cache size, etc.

In the rating process AMD gives a better competition to Intel (Build a Computer Guide 2006). In this comparison we would discuss the specifications of desktop CPUs by Intel known as AMD Athlon 64, Intel Celeron D processor family, AMD Sempron processor, and Intel Pentium dual core CPUs. Sempron processor family by AMD took the place of its Duron family. Known as the part of budget line processors Sempron processors comprised of two different architectures of processors which are K7 and K8 micro-architectures. K7 architecture based processors work on socket 462 motherboards also known as socket A.

basically specifying the motherboard is to make clear that all the motherboards can have certain specific processors which is why it should be worth mentioning this information. The ones using K8 architecture requires motherboards with socket 754, AM2, or 939. These processors offer some new features which are the part of new architecture. The Sempron processors are the re-branded version of Athlon XP budget processors line introduced Duron previously which had some lame features but Sempron has each of its feature from Athlon XP Central Processing Units.

The Socket A processors have the bus speed of 333 Mega Hertz, bus connects the processor to memory embedded in motherboard, there are I/O busses as well which are used to hook up the processor to other components in system. Bus supports the passage of data between the different components and the frequency of this passage is referred to as bus speed. Socket A processors also have level 2 cache comprised of 256 Kilobytes or 512 Kilobytes, this bridges up the breach between processor and memory. The technology incorporated to fabricate Sempron is 0.

13-micron technology. Sempron processors pursue SSE instructions, they are Streaming Single-Instruction-Multiple-Data Extension registers which add separate registers for process and they have to be compatible with operating system to be used. Having the rated speed like Athlon XP these processors have diverse ratings. Athlon XP processors ratings are mostly relative to Pentium4 processor of Intel because of the competition. While Sempron processor ratings are found relative to Intel Celeron’s family of processors (CPU World 2008).

Coming to Pentium’s Dual-Core family of processors, it should be known that this is supposed to be the latest Pentium branded family. They are budget dual-core microprocessors with separate versions for mobile and desktop. The architecture used in Dual-Core Pentium processors is Core micro architecture having most of the Core’s prototype features like instructions of 32 KB and data cache of 32 KB per core which is used to quickly access the data stored in memory. Instruction used here are SSE3 and supplemental SSE3.

Execution has a dynamic wide range known as Wide Dynamic Execution where four instructions per clock can be executed by every core. They are also able to run 128-bit instruction in a single clock cycle and the instruction can be SSE, this is known as advanced digital media boost. There is a feature which stops the running of malevolent pieces of code by the external program. These pieces of code could load as data into the memory of system. This feature is executable disable bit which marks the data memory segments as non-executable.

Pentium Dual-Core processors by Intel have relatively small level 2 cache if compared to Core 2 Duo microprocessors. As we are discussing the desktop microprocessors therefore the Mobile version features are not being elaborated here which shows the efficient features of Intel Pentium Dual-Core processors even more (CPU World 2008). Another family of processors by Intel is Celeron D processor family. It is the novel name given to brand name of Celeron desktop processors. The Celeron D processor family pursues the NetBurst micro-architecture. This last generation of Celeron NetBurst processors uses 0.

13-micron technology. Northwood core has been incorporated here in this family of Celeron D processors. The 0. 13-micron technology has advanced and promoted to 0. 09 micron and even 0. 065 micron using Prescott core with Prescott-256 and Cedar Mill with Cedar-512 respectively. Prescott Celeron D microprocessors are an improved form of Northwood Celeron processors. The step by step advancements in Celeron D processors include the enlargement of level 2 cache up to 512 Kilobytes from 256 KB, speeding up of front side Bus frequency by 33% up to 2. 13 to 3. 6 Giga Hertz, having a single core.

The Prescott core central processing units have Execute Disable bit functionality which has been described above. Another improvement is it promotion to 64-bit mode. The Celeron D processors with package 478-pin micro FC-PGA comprise normally of Prescott core features and do not support Executable Disable Bit, but only some of its packages like 775-land FC-LGA. Cedar Mill Core processors were used in next generation of Celeron processors, and improved in terms of larger level 2 cache. All of them had Execute Disable Bit feature and 64-bit mode. Motherboard socket 775 and it was incorporated only in 775-land FC-LGA package.

The brand of Celeron D microprocessors was only intended for desktop microprocessors. There mobile editions were given the brand name of Celeron M (CPU World 2008). AMD Athlon 64 microprocessors were 64-bit microprocessors. The architecture that Athlon 64 followed was known as K8. This was the range of desktop computer’s Central Processing Units by AMD. They had a single core and comprised of K8 micro-architectural features. These processors have level 1 cache with 128 Kilobytes, level 2 cache with 512 Kilobytes or 1 Megabyte, and 1800 to 2800 Mega Hertz of frequency.

The architectural specifications incorporated by Athlon 64 processor’s K8 architecture is AMD64 technology with the feature of enhanced virus protection. Instruction sets supported are SSE2 and to an extent SSE3 too. SSE3 set of instructions were appended in Athlon 64 processors having core revision. There is an integrated memory controller in Athlon 64 processors in order to maintain an interfacing between memory and peripheral devices. Front Side bus, which is used for passage of data between processor and North Bridge, is replaced in these processors by a Hyper Transport Link.

Having incorporated with new things like integrated memory controller and Hyper Transport Link, the processor improved steadily as HTL to provide low latency and high bandwidth between the different links. Its improvement took a new face when introduction of new package occurred with socket types e. g. the processors including single channel DDR SDRAM memory controller and a 800 Mega Hertz HTL, this package was referred as Socket 754 processors/754-pin package. DDR is technology of high bandwidth dynamic RAM and cost effective. Another 939-pin package/Socket 939 in the motherboard had a memory controller enhanced to dual-channel controller.

This controller has ability to provide better bandwidth of memory comparatively. Package of 940-pin/Socket AM2 supported DDR SDRAM memory enhancing the memory bandwidth to its double rate i. e. 12. 8 Gigabytes / second. A major advice for this socket is that it does not support 940 sockets anymore but the AM2 socket in the motherboard. The technology used in these processors is 0. 13, 0. 09, and 0. 65 with the units’ microns (CPU World 2008). After having an overview of different processor families and their specifications, it can be suggested by having no doubts that AMD Athlon 64 microprocessor is the one to own.

The main reason behind this decision indeed is the difference in employment of technology. The use of integrated memory controller by AMD Athlon processor is like a revolt which sends the information back and forth between the processor of computer system and the memory in system ensuring fast execution of operations and differs highly from Intel’s isolated pieces of memory controller which prolongs the processing time between the passing of information between processor and memory (Directron 2008).

List of References Build a Computer Guide.. (2006) . Choosing a Processor [online] Available from <http://www. build-a-computer-guide. com/Choosingaprocessor. htm> [Accessed 11 March 2009] CPU World. (2008). AMD Athlon 64 microprocessor [online] Available from <http://www. cpu-world. com/CPUs/K8/TYPE-Athlon%2064. html> [Accessed 11 March 2009] CPU World. (2008). AMD Sempron Processor [online] Available from <http://www. cpu-world. com/CPUs/K7/TYPE-Sempron. html> [Accessed 11 March 2009] CPU World.

(2008). Intel Celeron D processor family [online] Available from <http://www. cpu-world. com/CPUs/Celeron_D/index. html> [Accessed 11 March 2009] CPU World. (2008). Intel Pentium Dual-Core micro-processors [online] Available from <http://www. cpu-world. com/CPUs/Pentium_Dual-Core/index. html> [Accessed 11 March 2009] Directron. (2008). AMD Athlon 64 and Athlon 64 FX vs. Intel Pentium 4 EE CPU [online] Available from <http://www. directron. com/amd64pentium4. html> [Accessed 11 March 2009]

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