Intel tools support multicore CPUs - Embedded.com

Intel tools support multicore CPUs

Bringing new programming and debugging support to its latest multicore processors, Intel Corp. has announced new versions of its Thread Checker, Thread Profiler, VTune Performance Analyzer, and Threading Building Blocks products. The tools will help designers create, debug and tune applications using Windows Vista and Linux operating systems.

Multicore programming and debugging has become a serious challenge for embedded designers, even as the number of multicore CPUs has grown. Multicore requires parallel programming, generally implemented with independent threads of execution. Debugging is complicated by the need to view interactions between multiple processors.

At last week's Embedded Systems Conference, Intel reaffirmed its commitment to multicore development support, and introduced the company's upcoming quad-core Xeon 5300 processors in a keynote address.

The new Intel tools have been enhanced for the latest multicore processors, including the Intel Core 2 Extreme QX6800 and Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600. The tools work with Microsoft Vista, Novell SUSE Linux Enterprise, Red Hat Enterprise Linux, and Fedora Core.

“Our Intel Core 2 processors have essential new profiling capabilities we're taking advantage of for the first time in our VTune Analyzer 9.0,” said James Reinders, director of marketing for Intel's developer products division, in a statement. “Since nearly all systems shipping with Windows Vista will be multicore systems, developers targeting Vista have been asking us for these parallelism tools.”

The Intel Thread Checker 3.1 for Windows and Linux detects errors in the coding of parallelism so that developers can introduce threading more safely and quickly. The tool's performance has been optimized for lower instrumented image size and run-time overhead, Intel claims.

Intel Thread Profiler 3.1 for Windows shows how application threads behave, and pinpoints parallel performance problems such as bottlenecks. The updated version offers selectable stackwalking for faster analysis and display, and claims ease of use through support for automatic recall of custom configuration settings within an activity.

Intel Threading Building Blocks 1.1 for Windows, Linux and Mac OS X is a C++ template library that simplifies introducing threads to an application. The enhanced version includes an automatic grain size calculator for algorithm parallelization. Finally, Intel VTune Performance Analyzer 9.0 helps designers run software faster. It now comes with improved Vista support.

The new products are available today with prices ranging from $299 to $999.

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