Why the platform focus?

Article: Tukwila Update
By: Linus Torvalds (torvalds.delete@this.linux-foundation.org), February 7, 2009 9:40 am
Room: Moderated Discussions
someone (someone@somewhere.com) on 2/7/09 wrote:
>
>The scalability stuff in Tukwila takes up a significant
>portion of the die area and power budget. Putting even
>a fraction of that overhead in the same die that Intel
>sells as desktop and laptop processors is just plain
>nuts.

I agree. In fact, especially with four cores, I see no
point in doing any cache-coherent QPI at all in that
market. You can do a fine workstation with a single
chip.

So what matters is:

>What about Beckton (Nehalem generation Xeon MP)?
>Well the fact is x86 server sales of 4 sockets and up is
>only worth about $1B per quarter, has flat sales growth
>and AMD takes a bigger share of it than any other x86
>segment.

.. but that's kind of a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Of course x86 stays in the quad-socket (and lower)
area, as long as nobody drives it any higher. AMD didn't
really scale past that (yes, maybe that changes to 8 soon
enough). And the very reason that AMD had a bigger pie
of that market was that Intel scaled even less due to the
whole shared bus.

Now, I suspect that Intel sees Beckton as a "Niagara
killer" rather than a POWER6 competitor, and that would
certainly explain focusing on 1-4 sockets (with duals
probably being the bulk, since that just makes everything
cheap and simple for some random box that is going to
have tons of CPU power anyway).

>Putting the scalability stuff in Beckton would
>probably cost it a couple of cores and maybe a speed
>bin. Beckton will compete with future AMD processors
>far more than IPF and extra cores and clock speed are
>more valuable than scaling well to beyond 4 sockets
>(which AMD server processors don't).

I really wish people saw x86 as competition to POWER.

It obviously takes more than Intel for that to happen:
they'd need to get somebody like HP on board, because
that market really wants more than just the hardware.

But look at it this way: if you're trying to convince
somebody to stray from the POWER fold, what the hell has
IPF to offer? Absolutely nothing. This whole argument that
IPF is competing against POWER seems broken to me. If it
is, it is losing.

POWER has better performance, a better infrastructure, and
a vendor who doesn't screw its customers over like clock-
work every decade.

So if you want to compete against that, you need to compete
on something. IPF doesn't have it. Performance? No. Better
infrastructure? It's now finally catching up. And an
architecture that everybody will have to worry might go
the way of PA-RISC and Alpha in another five years, and
continuing the whole HP/Compaq history.

In contrast, if HP competed with x86, they'd have at least
a couple of arguments on their side. Performance? Check.
An architecture you don't need to even wonder whether it
will stay around? Check. An architecture that people are
used to, and scales from your company laptops all the way
up? Check.

>That's why IPF QPI gets distributed directory and x86 QPI
>doesn't. Sorry, no craziness or conspiracy theory here.
>It's just Intel doing what the server market wants. :-)

Oh, I'm sure beckton will sell like hotcakes. The people
who buy Niagara will all love it. There's no argument that
the bulk of servers is all at the low end.

But if people really want to compete against POWER, I don't
think IPF is the best answer.

Linus
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TopicPosted ByDate
Tukwila Update - article onlineDavid Kanter2009/02/04 11:03 PM
  Tukwila Update - article onlineDan2009/02/05 02:17 AM
    Tukwila Update - article onlineJoe Chang2009/02/05 08:16 AM
    Tukwila Update - article onlineTemp2009/02/05 08:25 AM
      Tukwila Update - article onlinePaul2009/02/05 11:29 AM
        Tukwila Update - article onlineDavid Kanter2009/02/05 05:32 PM
          Tukwila Update - article onlinePhil2009/02/06 12:24 AM
            Great. Finally hard numbersMichael S2009/02/06 03:46 AM
            Tukwila Update - article onlinelubemark2009/02/06 04:54 AM
              Tukwila Update - article onlinePhil2009/02/06 06:29 AM
                Tukwila Update - article onlineRagingDragon2009/02/07 02:39 PM
                  Tukwila Update - article onlineMichael S2009/02/07 03:09 PM
            Tukwila Update - article onlinesavantu2009/02/06 05:23 AM
              Tukwila Update - article onlineMichael S2009/02/06 06:13 AM
            Tukwila Update - article onlinesomeone2009/02/06 06:18 AM
              Tukwila Update - article onlinePhil2009/02/06 06:47 AM
                Tukwila Update - article onlinesomeone2009/02/06 07:17 AM
                Tukwila Update - article onlineRagingDragon2009/02/07 02:51 PM
              Tukwila Update - article onlineLinus Torvalds2009/02/06 07:37 AM
                Tukwila Update - article onlinesomeone2009/02/06 08:19 AM
                Tukwila Update - article onlinesavantu2009/02/06 09:19 AM
                  Tukwila Update - article onlineLinus Torvalds2009/02/06 09:40 AM
                    Tukwila Update - article onlinesavantu2009/02/06 10:00 AM
              Tukwila Update - article onlinePhil2009/02/09 03:54 AM
                Tukwila Update - article onlineDoug Siebert2009/02/09 09:40 PM
                  Tukwila Update - article onlineJouni Osmala2009/02/10 12:03 AM
                  Tukwila Update - article onlinesomeone2009/02/10 05:15 AM
                Tukwila Update - article onlineslacker2009/02/10 05:22 PM
    Tukwila Update - article onlineMichael S2009/02/05 02:56 PM
    Tukwila Update - article onlineDavid Kanter2009/02/05 03:55 PM
    Tukwila Update - article onlinesomeone2009/02/05 04:47 PM
      Tukwila Update - article onlineanon2009/02/05 09:16 PM
        Tukwila Update - article onlineRagingDragon2009/02/05 09:27 PM
        Tukwila Update - article onlinesomeone2009/02/06 06:32 AM
          Tukwila Update - article onlineanon2009/02/06 08:25 AM
            Tukwila Update - article onlinesomeone2009/02/06 08:40 AM
  POWER6 memory bandwidthMichael S2009/02/05 02:30 AM
    POWER6 memory bandwidthsomeone2009/02/05 06:00 AM
      POWER6 memory bandwidthMichael S2009/02/05 06:36 AM
      POWER6 interconnectconfused2009/02/05 09:50 AM
        POWER6 interconnectfoobar2009/02/05 01:12 PM
    POWER6 memory bandwidthWes Felter2009/02/05 11:57 AM
    POWER6 memory bandwidthJesper Frimann2009/02/09 10:54 PM
      POWER6 memory bandwidthMichael S2009/02/10 06:21 AM
  Why the platform focus?Linus Torvalds2009/02/05 07:40 AM
    Why the platform focus?savantu2009/02/05 07:50 AM
      Why the platform focus?Vincent Diepeveen2009/02/05 08:29 AM
        Why the platform focus?savantu2009/02/05 09:34 PM
          Why the platform focus?Vincent Diepeveen2009/02/05 10:09 PM
          Why the platform focus?Phil2009/02/06 12:10 AM
            Why the platform focus?savantu2009/02/06 12:50 AM
              Why the platform focus?Phil2009/02/06 06:09 AM
                Why the platform focus?savantu2009/02/06 09:08 AM
                Why the platform focus?someone2009/02/06 09:21 AM
                  Why the platform focus?mpx2009/02/06 01:04 PM
                    Why the platform focus?someone2009/02/06 01:16 PM
                Why the platform focus?RagingDragon2009/02/07 03:16 PM
                Why the platform focus?mas2009/02/25 07:28 AM
              itanium bigger than entire car industryVincent Diepeveen2009/02/06 06:12 AM
                itanium bigger than entire car industryDevon Welles2009/02/06 06:51 AM
                  itanium bigger than entire car industryVincent Diepeveen2009/02/06 09:41 AM
                  itanium bigger than entire car industryDean Kent2009/02/06 06:56 PM
                    Unit sales is meaningless when ASP grows fastersomeone2009/02/07 08:38 AM
                      Unit sales is meaningless when ASP grows fasterDean Kent2009/02/07 02:10 PM
                        Unit sales is meaningless when ASP grows fasterRagingDragon2009/02/07 03:34 PM
                    itanium bigger than entire car industryVincent Diepeveen2009/02/08 04:35 AM
                itanium bigger than entire car industryRagingDragon2009/02/07 03:40 PM
            Why the platform focus?Vincent Diepeveen2009/02/06 06:47 AM
      Yes it doesm performance mattersbob2009/02/05 09:51 AM
        Yes it doesm performance mattersVenki2009/02/05 10:06 AM
      Why the platform focus?Doug Siebert2009/02/06 12:07 AM
        Why the platform focus?savantu2009/02/06 01:00 AM
    Why the platform focus?someone2009/02/05 09:49 AM
      Why the platform focus?Linus Torvalds2009/02/05 11:03 AM
        Why the platform focus?Default2009/02/05 12:29 PM
          Why the platform focus?anon2009/02/05 01:08 PM
        Why the platform focus?someone2009/02/05 01:24 PM
          Why the platform focus?Linus Torvalds2009/02/05 02:30 PM
    Why the platform focus?Paradox2009/02/05 10:22 AM
    Why the platform focus?slacker2009/02/05 12:41 PM
      Why the platform focus?RagingDragon2009/02/05 09:57 PM
      Why the platform focus?Michael S2009/02/06 05:11 AM
        Why the platform focus?slacker2009/02/06 12:58 PM
          Why the platform focus?Michael S2009/02/08 01:24 AM
            Why the platform focus?someone2009/02/08 08:38 AM
              Why the platform focus?David Kanter2009/02/08 03:27 PM
                Why the platform focus?someone2009/02/08 06:26 PM
                  Why the platform focus?savantu2009/02/08 11:35 PM
          Why the platform focus?someone2009/02/08 08:53 AM
    All x86 SpecInt scores are useless due to autopar (NT)Michael S2009/02/05 02:15 PM
      Auto parallelizationDavid Kanter2009/02/05 05:17 PM
      All x86 SpecInt scores are useless due to autopar (NT)Paradox2009/02/06 07:47 AM
    Why the platform focus?David Kanter2009/02/05 03:49 PM
    Why the platform focus?David Kanter2009/02/06 12:09 AM
      Why the platform focus?Linus Torvalds2009/02/06 07:14 AM
        Why the platform focus?savantu2009/02/06 09:37 AM
          Why the platform focus?Linus Torvalds2009/02/06 11:49 AM
            Why the platform focus?Linus Torvalds2009/02/06 12:09 PM
            Intel puts its money where its mouth issomeone2009/02/06 01:08 PM
              Intel puts its money where its mouth isRagingDragon2009/02/07 05:01 PM
                Intel puts its money where its mouth issomeone2009/02/08 01:24 PM
                  mission-criticalMichael S2009/02/08 04:06 PM
                    mission-criticalmpx2009/02/09 01:30 AM
                      mission-criticalrwessel2009/02/09 02:23 PM
                    mission-criticalanon2009/02/09 02:55 AM
                    mission-criticalEduardoS2009/02/09 04:17 PM
                      mission-criticalDean Kent2009/02/09 07:11 PM
                        mission-criticalMichael S2009/02/10 04:20 AM
                          mission-criticalDean Kent2009/02/10 06:26 AM
                            mission-criticalMichael S2009/02/10 07:01 AM
                              mission-criticalDean Kent2009/02/10 12:36 PM
                            mission-criticalsomeone2009/02/10 08:05 AM
                              mission-criticalDean Kent2009/02/10 12:22 PM
                                mission-criticalZt2009/02/22 03:54 PM
                          mission-criticalanon2009/02/10 09:41 PM
                        mission-criticalEduardoS2009/02/10 12:46 PM
                          mission-criticalDean Kent2009/02/10 01:31 PM
                        mission-criticalslacker2009/02/10 06:30 PM
                    mission-criticalVincent Diepeveen2009/02/18 06:20 AM
                  Mission criticalmpx2009/02/09 12:00 AM
            Why the platform focus?savantu2009/02/07 12:15 AM
              Sun and x86 server differentiationDavid Kanter2009/02/07 12:34 AM
                Sun and x86 server differentiationmax2009/02/07 02:30 AM
                Sun and x86 server differentiationsomeone2009/02/07 09:19 AM
                  Sun and x86 server differentiationLinus Torvalds2009/02/07 09:44 AM
                Sun and x86 server differentiationRagingDragon2009/02/07 05:09 PM
                  Sun and x86 server differentiationMichael S2009/02/08 04:05 AM
                    Sun and x86 server differentiationRagingDragon2009/02/09 11:03 PM
                    Sun and x86 server differentiationJesper Frimann2009/02/09 11:51 PM
                      Sun and x86 server differentiationAlex Jones2009/02/10 12:43 PM
            Why the platform focus?bob2009/02/08 03:51 AM
              Why the platform focus?someone2009/02/08 08:23 AM
          missing the big pictureAM2009/02/18 05:43 AM
            missing the big pictureMichael S2009/02/18 07:42 AM
              missing the big pictureAM2009/02/18 08:03 AM
        Why the platform focus?mpx2009/02/06 11:47 AM
          Itanium - slowest and most obsolete server CPU family in the world, NOW.mpx2009/02/06 03:48 PM
            Itanium - slowest and most obsolete server CPU family in the world, NOW.Paul2009/02/07 01:56 PM
              z series?Michael S2009/02/07 02:12 PM
              Itanium - slowest and most obsolete server CPU family in the world, NOW.someone else2009/02/24 03:37 AM
                Itanium - slowest and most obsolete server CPU family in the world, NOW.EduardoS2009/02/24 05:55 AM
                  Itanium - slowest and most obsolete server CPU family in the world, NOW.someone else2009/02/25 12:55 AM
                    Itanium - slowest and most obsolete server CPU family in the world, NOW.Michael S2009/02/25 01:27 AM
          Why the platform focus?RagingDragon2009/02/07 05:18 PM
            Why the platform focus?Paul2009/02/08 12:10 PM
              Why the platform focus?Jukka Larja2009/02/08 10:04 PM
        Why the platform focus?slacker2009/02/06 01:10 PM
          Why the platform focus?Linus Torvalds2009/02/06 01:40 PM
            Why the platform focus?savantu2009/02/06 01:51 PM
            Why the platform focus?someone2009/02/06 01:58 PM
              Why the platform focus?Linus Torvalds2009/02/07 08:26 AM
                Why the platform focus?someone2009/02/07 09:10 AM
                  Why the platform focus?Linus Torvalds2009/02/07 09:40 AM
                    Why the platform focus?someone2009/02/07 11:24 AM
                      Why the platform focus?Doug Siebert2009/02/07 11:32 PM
                        Why the platform focus?max2009/02/08 03:57 AM
                          Why the platform focus?Michael S2009/02/08 04:20 AM
                        Why the platform focus?someone2009/02/08 08:15 AM
                          Why the platform focus?Doug Siebert2009/02/08 10:36 PM
                      Why the platform focus?hobold2009/02/09 04:49 AM
                Why the platform focus?anon2009/02/24 12:57 AM
                  Why the platform focus?Linus Torvalds2009/02/24 08:45 AM
                    Why the platform focus?savantu2009/02/24 11:30 AM
                      Why the platform focus?slacker2009/02/24 12:51 PM
                        Why the platform focus?savantu2009/02/24 11:04 PM
                          Why the platform focus?Michael S2009/02/25 01:34 AM
                          Why the platform focus?anon2009/02/25 09:17 AM
                      Why the platform focus?max2009/02/25 10:15 AM
                    Why the platform focus?someone2009/02/24 04:43 PM
                      Why the platform focus?Doug Siebert2009/02/24 07:26 PM
                        Why the platform focus?Howard Chu2009/02/25 02:07 AM
                          Why the platform focus?someone2009/02/25 05:48 AM
                        Why the platform focus?someone2009/02/25 05:41 AM
                          Why the platform focus?Linus Torvalds2009/02/25 08:17 AM
                            Why the platform focus?someone2009/02/25 08:55 AM
                              has anyone seen Tukwila silicon?anon2009/02/25 09:38 AM
                              Why the platform focus?Linus Torvalds2009/02/25 10:05 AM
                                Why the platform focus?slacker2009/02/25 12:11 PM
                                Why the platform focus?a reader2009/02/26 08:11 PM
                                  Why the platform focus?rcf2009/02/27 12:32 PM
                                    Why the platform focus?max2009/02/27 01:11 PM
                                      Why the platform focus?rcf2009/02/27 02:50 PM
                            Why the platform focus?Vincent Diepeveen2009/02/25 03:30 PM
                            $40M sale to $16M companybob2009/02/25 07:25 PM
                              $40M sale to $16M companyRichard Cownie2009/02/26 11:21 AM
                  Why the platform focus?anonymous2009/02/24 10:52 AM
                    Why the platform focus?savantu2009/02/24 11:20 AM
                      Why the platform focus?anonymous2009/02/24 02:31 PM
                        Why the platform focus?savantu2009/02/24 11:05 PM
                        Why the platform focus?someone else2009/02/25 12:04 AM
                          Why the platform focus?Michael S2009/02/25 12:42 AM
                            Put me down for $500 that Poulson doesn't arrive earlier than Q4/2011 (NT)slacker2009/02/25 11:39 AM
                        Why the platform focus?someone2009/02/25 05:54 AM
                          Why the platform focus?anonymous2009/02/25 08:46 AM
                            Why the platform focus?someone2009/02/25 09:22 AM
                            Why the platform focus?anon2009/02/25 10:01 AM
                              Why the platform focus?anonymous2009/02/25 10:54 AM
                  Why the platform focus?mpx2009/02/24 01:11 PM
                    Why the platform focus?anon2009/02/24 07:57 PM
                      Why the platform focus?Doug Siebert2009/02/24 09:04 PM
                        Why the platform focus?anon2009/02/24 09:46 PM
                          Why the platform focus?Doug Siebert2009/02/25 04:13 PM
                            Why the platform focus?anon2009/02/25 07:53 PM
                              Why the platform focus?bob2009/02/25 08:00 PM
                                Please try to keep up (NT)anon2009/02/25 08:49 PM
                              Why the platform focus?Doug Siebert2009/02/25 11:09 PM
                                Why the platform focus?anon2009/02/26 12:12 AM
                                Why the platform focus?Michael S2009/02/26 01:16 AM
                                  Why the platform focus?James2009/02/26 05:09 AM
                                    sufficiently intimate with the OSMichael S2009/02/26 05:29 AM
                                      sufficiently intimate with the OSanon2009/02/27 12:01 AM
                                      sufficiently intimate with the OSHoward Chu2009/02/27 12:37 AM
                      Why the platform focus?Michael S2009/02/25 01:02 AM
                        Why the platform focus?anon2009/02/25 02:07 AM
              Why the platform focus?anon2009/02/07 12:18 PM
                Why the platform focus?Vincent Diepeveen2009/02/08 09:16 AM
                Why the platform focus?anon2009/02/25 06:40 AM
                  Intels financial statusVincent Diepeveen2009/02/25 11:02 AM
                Why the platform focus?someone2009/02/25 06:54 AM
      Why the platform focus?Vincent Diepeveen2009/02/06 07:20 AM
        Why the platform focus?Default2009/02/06 08:57 AM
          Why the platform focus?Vincent Diepeveen2009/02/06 09:59 AM
          Why the platform focus?RagingDragon2009/02/07 05:43 PM
  Tukwila Update - article onlineVincent Diepeveen2009/02/05 08:11 AM
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