Forget the term “dual-core” and get ready to see the term “multi-core” when it comes to processors. Five years ago, Intel envisioned processors running at 20 GHz by the end of this decade, but that isn’t going to happen. Now Intel is looking to have 32 core processors out on the market by 2010.
The first processor of “Keifer” – Intel’s project name for many-core processors – will be surfacing in the 2009/2010 time frame and integrate 32 cores (128 threads total): The first Keifer chip will be manufactured in 32 nm and use eight processing nodes with four cores each. Every node will have direct access to one 3 MB on-die last level cache (LLC) and 512 kB L2 cache. There will be a total of 8 x 3 MB LLC slices that are connected by a ring architecture and represent a total 24 MB of cache.