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Are mutiple cores necessary in a compute..."

by glorym / November 30, 2012 9:20 PM PST

I ordered a HP AMD Pavillion g7-2237computer which I have not received yet. It has a 2.7 accelerated processor (up to 3.2 Ghz) Next Gen AMD A6-4400M. With 8GB DDR3 SDRAM and 1TB 5400RPM hard drive. It does not say it has multiple cores. Are dual, triple, etc cores needed?

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I believe AMD A6 CPUs have 6 cores
by wpgwpg / December 1, 2012 2:23 AM PST

The AMD web site doesn't make it easy to get CPU details, but I believe the A6 ones have 6 cores. Multiple cores speed things up some, but as I mentioned in my earlier post, unless you're playing fast action games, the hard drive is more the bottleneck than the processor or RAM. Rest assured though, you do have multiple cores.

Good luck.

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I Checked it Out on AMD Site
by glorym / December 1, 2012 8:14 PM PST

The infomation on my processor is scarce. I bought it at QVC and that may be the reason why. Many times the shopping clubs have computers built exclusively for them. The stores are charging a lot more than I paid for much less features. Thank you for pointing me in the right direction. In future, I will check with the manufacturer.

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Answer
Today? Yes.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / December 1, 2012 1:36 AM PST

Years ago you could start a lively debate about needed more CPUs in a box. Today it's "discussion over" and may upset those that missed the prior discussions. Let's start with yes.

But if folk are patient they could get by with a single core CPU. Most folk don't want to wait. Some of the older discussions also have fold writing that the OS is bad since it uses more cores. Lots of prior discussions and I smiled as I used my dual CPU PC in the early 90's.

Still smiling,
Bob

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How much software multi-tasks still today?
by wpgwpg / December 1, 2012 2:07 AM PST
In reply to: Today? Yes.

Bob,
No doubt almost everything nowadays has at least two cores, and at least with Intel you have hyperthreading on top of that. Even my 7 month old Kindle Fire has a dual processor. Software is gradually catching up with the hardware, but there's still a lot that doesn't multi-task. I don't play the fast action games; I understand that some of them really multi-task well, but outside of that and doing updates, I see a whole lot of times when my CPU meter hits 50% with little disk activity and just sits there for 15 - 20 seconds. It seems like installing Office 2010 (64 bit) had a good bit of this.
My experience with multi-tasking goes back to the 1960s with mainframes when we tried to get the perfect mix of commercial and scientific jobs running on mainframe computers. The commercial jobs were I/O bound and the scientific ones were number crunchers, so a mix got good use of the expensive resources.
Getting back to PCs, most still have a single hard drive which operates in milliseconds when the RAM and CPU operate in nanoseconds. For those not good with numbers a millisecond seems fast to us humans, but a nanosecond is a MILLIONTH of a millisecond. Given a little thought, it's obvious that the speed of the hard drive makes it the bottleneck in most desktop and laptops. SSDs will eventually eliminate the seeking and rotational delay we have in HDs, but they still operate in milliseconds. Caching with lots of RAM or even in the hardware helps, but we still have the factor of a million in speed differences, so the developers of storage devices have got their work cut out for them. I read the gee-whiz stuff about quantum computers, but right now that seems more like a fantasy than reality. Still we've seen incredible progress in storage devices since the early days of disk drives. I remember paying something like $265 for a 5.25" floppy drive to go on a Commodore 64. Going back even further to the mid 1960s my first disk drive experience was an IBM 1301 that was the size of a big refrigerator, had platters about 2 feet in diameter, and held all of about 50 meg. When that sucker would seek, it would shake the floor.

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Same here.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / December 1, 2012 2:40 AM PST

Back then we would split up the compute task on as many computers we could muster. Yes we could go to the Cray but that had fees that our R&D could not pay. Or rather we would have to cut a staff member over waiting a little longer.
Bob

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Too many typos.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / December 1, 2012 2:38 AM PST
In reply to: Today? Yes.

Too late to fix that. I meant "older discussions also have folk" not fold.

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