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Monday, August 15, 2005, 05:45 pm PT (08:45 pm ET)

Intel to deliver dual-core, hyper-threaded chips earlier than expected

With development ahead of schedule, Intel Corporation today announced it is accelerating the availability of its dual-core, hyper-threaded Xeon and Xeon MP processors.

The new processors will help improve server responsiveness, speed and multi-tasking by allowing software to manage information from up to four “brains” per Intel processor. In addition, Intel said today that it has begun a broad evaluation program of thousands of dual-core platforms for software developers and enterprise customers.

“As they did with dual-core PC processors earlier this year, Intel engineers have executed exquisitely, and because of that we’ll bring our dual-core Intel Xeon processor platforms to the marketplace well ahead of schedule,” said Kirk Skaugen, general manager of Intel's Server Platforms Group.

Originally due in 2006, Intel plans to introduce the dual-core Xeon processor MP, codenamed “Paxville,” for servers with four or more processors later in 2005. Paxville will provide more than 60 percent better performance over previous generations and will use the Intel E8500 chipset, which has been architected for dual-core performance and was introduced earlier this year.

For dual processor servers, the company in 2005 plans to ship a premium dual-core Xeon processor, codenamed “Paxville DP.” The processor will deliver up to 50 percent improved performance over previous generations through use the Intel E7520 chipset.

Paxville DP will be targeted at early adopters and evaluators of dual-core technology and is to be followed in 2006 by a broader family of dual-core Xeon processor-based platforms, codenamed “Bensley” for servers and “Glidewell” for workstations. Both processors are targeted to complete an extremely aggressive transition to dual-core top to bottom in Intel’s entire server and workstation line-up.

The 64-bit Paxville and Paxville DP processors will utilize Intel's Hyper-Threading Technology, allowing a single dual-core processor to run four threads simultaneously. The platforms will also include enhanced security features such as Execute Disable Bit and improved power management with Demand Based Switching.

Intel said it has 17 multi-core projects under development and expects more than 85 percent of its server volume exiting 2006 to be multi-core processors. In addition to the Xeon processors due in 2005, Intel began shipping the dual-core Intel Pentium D processor for uni-processor servers in July 2005 and remains on track to begin shipping dual-core Itanium processors by the end of the year, the company said.

Intel’s evaluation program, which began on Monday, will ultimately deliver thousands of dual-core platforms based on Pentium D processors, Xeon processors, Xeon MP processors and Itanium processors to early adopter customers and software developers through 2005 and into 2006.