AMD Cracks Open its 64-bit Math Books

Hoping to build wider support for its 64-bit processors, Advanced Micro Devices Tuesday released its AMD Core Math Library (ACML) V1.0.

The new development tool was made in cooperation with The Numerical Algorithms Group (NAG) and covers AMD’s current Opteron server chips as well as its Athlon64 desktop processors, due out this fall.

The Sunnyvale, Calif.-based chipmaker said the tools are designed to help developers design very efficient Opteron processor-based clusters.

“These robust and reliable core numerical components can help developers extract peak floating point performance and accuracy for AMD Opteron processor clustering and other x86-based platforms,” said NAG CEO Brian Ford. “This vital tool promotes the adoption of AMD64 clusters for more powerful financial, biotechnology, education, government and research computing.”

The ACML is composed of highly optimized numeric functions for mathematical, engineering, scientific, and financial applications. The library, initially available with a FORTRAN interface, is comprised of a full implementation of optimized Level 1, 2 and 3 Basic Linear Algebra Subroutines (BLAS), Linear Algebra Package (LAPACK) as well as Fast Fourier Transforms (FFTs) in single-, double-, single-complex and double-complex data types. The 1.0 release will support 32-bit and 64-bit Linux as well as 32-bit Windows.

AMD designed its 64-bit processors with backward compatibility with 32-bit applications. The chips come with an integrated memory controller — a 128-bit, dual-channel design supporting DDR266 and DDR333 SDRAM.
The chips also offer support for SSE, SSE2, MMX, 3DNow! technology and legacy x86 instructions.

The Opteron series, for example, has 64-bit integer registers, 48-bit virtual addresses, 40-bit physical addresses, eight new 64-bit integer registers (16 total) and eight new 128-bit SSE/SSE2 registers (16 total).

The chips also include AMD’s HyperTransport technology to I/O devices complete with three links, 16-bits in each direction. Each supports up to 1600 MT/s or 3.2 GB/s in each direction. Each link can connect to an I/O device or another processor.

AMD’s other named 64-bit chip, the Athlon64 is due out in September.

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