In the meantime though Intel is still pushing standard single core Pentium 4. The theory is that standard Pentium 4 is better for those super high clock speeds, so for business users who tend to have a more head down approach to tasks, and will most likely only be doing a couple of things at a time will get more benefit from a standard single core, very high-clock speed, Hyper-Threaded CPU. Such as say, the new Pentium 4 670. This offers all the standard Pentium 4 goodness, with 2MB of Level 2 cache, Execute Disable Bit security protection, Enhanced SpeedStep technology, Hyper-Threading and EM64T 64-bit technology (so you can play 64-bit Far Cry and erâ€¦). Itâ€™s built on 90mn process technology and running on an 800MHz bus.
For enterprise though, perhaps of more significance than the launch of a new CPU is the launch of Intel Active management Technology (AMT). I was first introduced to this in November last year. This is a method of remotely polling desktop PCs in an enterprise environment in order to more efficiently manage asset management of hardware and software, thus delivering large cost savings and also manage systems even when powered down. Itâ€™s a combination of a special network card, chipset support and software.
To deliver this Intel has announced support for the Intel PRO/1000 PM network card featuring the so called Manageability Engine and chipset support for AMT in its new 945X, more of which on soon, adding to the AMT support offered by the high-end 955X chipset.
For the consumer and regular home user however, Intel is pushing the dual-core Pentium D, which is a move that makes a lot of sense. The theory behind dual core, in case you missed it, is based on the sound Zaphod Beeblebrox principle that two heads are better than one. With dual core youâ€™ll have one processor for dealing with all the housekeeping your PC has to do, such as virus checking, Spyware protection, software firewalls, leaving the other processor to do the stuff you need to do, such as playing with digital content like videos or photos or playing a game. Intel is also talking about a PC acting as a media centre for the home, with several users accessing content from the same PC, without the processor skipping a beat. Multi-user, multi-usage and multi-tasking are the buzz words of the day. The Pentium D as with the Extreme Edition is based on the Prescott core and offers 2MB of Level 2 cache, Execute Disable Bit, EM64T- but as mentioned already, thereâ€™s no Hyper-Threading, which for now acts as an Extreme Edition differentiator. Enhanced SpeedStep is listed as a feature on the 830 and 840 but not for some reason on the 820. Itâ€™s also built on 90mn process technology and runs on an 800MHz bus.
To accompany the new processor is the new 945 Express chipset, which offers some new features. The chipset now supports 667DDR2 memory and 1,066MHz bus, though the Pentium D it is nominally matched, only running at 800MHz.