The web is awash with initial reaction, benchmark speculation and analysis following yesterday’s launch of the new AMD quad core server processor, called simply Opteron and codenamed Barcelona.
Until reliable benchmarks are available it is impossible to establish how desirable the Opteron is in comparison to its Intel equivalents, so a look at AMD’s messaging should shed some light on how it hopes the maket will respond.
On its dedicated quad core microsite AMD lists the cardinal advantages it thinks Opteron has. They are:
Performance-per-watt refers to the increasingly key issue of energy efficiency. AMD has stuck with its inexplicable fondness for exclamation marks by introducing Enhanced AMD PowerNow! technology which appears to allow precise independent control of the frequency of each core and thus use only the power needed for the tasks at hand.
Optimal virtualisation is a reassurance that this increasingly important practice, which invloves the simulation of computer resources and environments, is well catered for by the new Opteron.
The Investment protection section is headlined "Low Data Center Operation Costs" refers to its common core strategy and same socket infrastructure to minimise transition costs. In other words, upgrading should be relatively cheap and easy, while scalability should allow you to keep the cost of running a data center to a minimum.
Outstanding perfomance is self explanatory and remains to be seen. There are many innovations and technology sub-brands revealed, but the only test will be when the technology community gets hold of them and finds out for itself.