Memory performance and scalability of intel's and AMD's dual-core processors: A case study

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Conference Proceeding

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As Chip Multiprocessor (CMP) has become the mainstream in processor architectures, Intel and AMD have introduced their dual-core processors to the PC market. In this paper, performance studies on an Intel Core 2 Duo, an Intel Pentium D and an AMD Athlon 64X2 processor are reported. According to the design specifications, key derivations exist in the critical memory hierarchy architecture among these dual-core processors. In addition to the overall execution time and throughput measurement using both multiprogrammed and multi-threaded workloads, this paper provides detailed analysis on the memory hierarchy performance and on the performance scalability between single and dual cores. Our results indicate that for the best performance and scalability, it is important to have (1) fast cache-to-cache communication, (2) large 12 or shared capacity, (3) fast L2 to core latency, and (4) fair cache resource sharing. Three dual-core processors that we studied have shown benefits of some of these factors, but not all of them. Core 2 Duo has the best performance for most of the workloads because of its microarchitecture features such as shared L2 cache. Pentium D shows the worst performance in many aspects due to its technologyremap of Pentium 4. © 2007 IEEE.

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Conference Proceedings of the IEEE International Performance, Computing, and Communications Conference

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