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Jul 11, 2012

Intel Itanium Processor Manual Reveals 9500 Poulson Models

Last time we talked about the Itanium processors, it was, thankfully, to provide some info on the chips themselves, and their codename, instead of updating people on the lawsuit they are involved in.

Ever since Oracle said it was dropping development of Itanium processor software, HP and Intel have been holding the opposite line. HP outright sued Oracle while Intel assured the world, repeatedly, that Itanium chips would keep being refined and released for at least ten more years. The effects have been mixed. Oracle has had to suffer serious backlash (and court losses), but HP's Itanium servers started selling less and less. Meanwhile, even Intel encountered some issues in its development and manufacture of the Poulson, the upcoming Itanium 9500 series. And by issues, we mean that, even though Intel didn't officially say anything, word came out that the next-generation Itaniums had been delayed (they were supposed to launch last month, July 2012). They will now launch in the third quarter (July-September).

Fortunately, that does not mean we have no new information to provide. Indeed, though the launch was moved back, Intel finished the Reference Manual for the processor 9500 SeriesAlso known as the Software Development and Optimization Guide, it contains specs and the names of four SKUs (stock-keeping units). In order of capability, they are 9520, 9540, 9550 and 9560. All Poulson Itanium are 8-core chips with 16 KB instruction on each core and 16 KB data first-level cache memory. The full cache capacity can go as high as 32 MB, of which some is divided into 512 KB instruction and 256 KB data mid-level caches. That said, the clock speeds are as follows: 1.73 GHz for the 9520, 2.13 GHz for the 9540, 2.4 GHz for the 9550 and 2.53 GHz for the 9560. As for the rest, Itanium Poulson benefit from 4 full-width and 2 half-width Quick Path Interconnect links, dual-channel DDR3 RAM support, Hyper-threading and Virtualization. The manufacturing process is 32nm.

Intel logo
Image credits to Intel


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