Friday, April 10, 2009

Windows 7 Build 7077 64-bit Leaked

That did not take long. Windows 7 build 7077 64-bit has been leaked only days after the initial appearance of the 32-bit edition of Windows 7 Build 7077 on P2P networks all over the globe. Thousands of users started downloading and spreading it immediately and the release is now well seeded on several sites with thousands of users distributing and downloading it.

The leaked version of Windows 7 Build 7077 64-bit has a size of 3.05 Gigabytes and the following filename: 077.0.090404-1255_x64fre_client_en-us_Retail_Ultimate-GRC1CULXFRER_EN_DVD.iso. The initial seeders were once again Russian users who always seem to be at the forefront when it comes to Windows 7 leaks.

Windows 7 Build 7077 Leaks

The number of leaks of the upcoming Windows 7 operating system is increasing by the week. The latest confirmed leak is build 7077 which appeared on various Bittorrent websites on April 7 and has quickly reached seeders and leechers in the thousands. The full build string of this release is: 7077.0.090404-1255_x86fre_client_en-us_Retail_Ultimate-GRC1CULFRER_EN_DVD.iso which means that it was build on April 4, 2009. The release is the 32-bit edition of Windows 7 Build 7077.

The first seeder of the Windows 7 build states that this is the release candidate build. While this information is not confirmed yet the about page shows no build string like the other leaked builds of Windows 7 did. The only other build that did not contain a build string was the Windows 7 Beta build.

AMD’s Microprocessors with Integrated Graphics Cores to Support DirectX 11 – Slides

The first microprocessor with built-in graphics processing unit from Advanced Micro Devices will not only feature up to four general purpose x86 cores, but will have DirectX 11-compatible graphics engine and will also be made using 32nm process technology, which should ensure relatively low power consumption.

AMD’s first accelerated processing unit (APU), according to slides published by Expreview web-site that resemble AMD’s official notes, will be code-named Llano chip with “up to” four cores, DirectX 11 graphics processor, built-in DDR3 memory controller and so on. The new code-named Sabine platform processor infrastructure will feature FS1, BGA1 form-factors.

According to slides published by Expreview web-site, code-named Sabine platform with Llano APU will support 900-series chipset family, along with USB 3.0, USB, Serial ATA, etc.

Microsoft: Windows Powers 96% of Netbooks As Consumers Want Them to Be on Par with Larger PCs

According to a Microsoft Corp.’s official, Windows operating system poweres the vast majority of netbooks sold in the U.S. since many customers want their ultra low cost mobile devices powered by Intel Atom processors that by no mean are supposed to handle serious tasks to work the same way as larger desktops or notebooks.

“Customers really do want netbook PCs to work like their larger brethren – and that the way the vast majority of consumers make that happen is by buying a netbook PC with Windows. As a result, the growth of Windows on netbook PCs over the last year has been phenomenal. We’ve seen Windows share on these PCs in the U.S. go from under 10% of unit sales during the first half of 2008 to 96% as of February 2009,” said Brandon LeBlanc from Microsoft citing latest NPD Retail Tracking Service data.

While the news that a lot of people are insisting on Windows is good for Microsoft, it may not be exactly positive for notebook makers as they face the trend when consumers who need a Windows-based laptop are getting a low-cost netbook instead. Citing Microstar International – a leading netbook vendor – and Canonical – the vendor supporting the commercial distribution of Ubuntu Linux – Mr. LeBlanc said that Linux-based netbooks’ return rate is four times higher than Windows-based.

“Why such a disparity? Because users simply expect the Windows experience. When they realize their Linux-based netbook PC doesn’t deliver that same quality of experience, they get frustrated and take it back,” Mr. LeBlanc said.

Looking forward, Microsoft claims that no matter how netbook PC hardware evolves, the software giant is gearing up to ensure that Windows 7 will run normally on them since it is a huge chunk of Windows business.

“As we mentioned at PDC, we’ve been testing Windows 7 on netbook PCs since before Windows 7 was feature complete, and our plan is to enable these small notebook PCs to run any edition of Windows 7. From what we’re hearing, our partners are excited to get Windows 7 on these PCs as well,” concluded the Microsoft blogger.

ATI Has No Immediate Plans for New Dual-Chip Flagship Graphics Card

ATI, graphics products group of Advanced Micro Devices, has no immediate plans to release a new dual-chip flagship graphics card based on the recently launched ATI Radeon HD 4890 (RV790) graphics processing units (GPUs) to address the market of performance-hungry customers as there are graphics cards that could satisfy their needs in the company’s product family.

In the recent years ATI decided to concentrate on development of very competitive performance-mainstream graphics chips that would be not very expensive in manufacturing, but which could still offer leading-edge performance when working in tandem. As a result, both previous-gen performance mainstream ATI Radeon processors – models 3870 (RV670) and 4870 (RV770) – powered dual-chip “X2” graphics cards. However, the company does not want to release ATI Radeon HD 4890 X2 now since the Radeon HD 4870 X2 is still competitive and price-points of the single-chip HD 4890 boards will not allow the company to sell HD 4890 X2 at price-point beyond $500.

ATI Radeon HD 4890 1GB graphics cards have recommended price between $229 and $249 in the USA. Two of such graphics cards would cost around $500, whereas for AMD it would make sense to introduce a flagship board at $549 price-point so to differ substantially from ATI Radeon HD 4870 X2 that has recommended price-tag of $399.

“The single-GPU ATI Radeon HD 4890 makes sense because it fills an important price band within the market and a gap within our product line. With respect to an X2 variant, as you know, the ATI Radeon X2 products are specifically designed for the ultra-enthusiast. We continue to sell well into this small, but important part of the graphics market with the ATI Radeon HD 4870 X2 as well as CrossFireX configurations of our single-GPU performance products and feel an additional product addressing the ultra high-end is not warranted at this time,” explained David Cummings, director of product marketing of discrete desktop graphics at AMD’s graphics products group, AMD.

There is no surprise that the price-war between ATI and Nvidia Corp. in the mainstream and performance-mainstream product segments popularized multi-GPU configurations consisting of two now-inexpensive graphics cards and slightly decreased popularity of dual-chip flagship offerings.

Since ATI RV790 graphics processor is not pin-to-pin compatible with ATI RV770, add-in-card manufacturers will not be able to just install new chips onto print circuit boards of ATI Radeon HD 4870 X2 cards. Moreover, Simon Vivera, another spokesperson for AMD’s graphics products group, said that the company for now forbids its partners to create Radeon HD 4890 X2 graphics cards.

Intel Xeon “Nehalem” Processor Available on the Market

Intel Corp., the world’s largest maker of microprocessors, has announced its new breed of processors aimed at dual-processor servers and workstations. The new Xeon chips powered by Nehalem micro-architecture feature integrated memory controller, high-speed Quick Path Interconnect point-to-point bus and sport other technology advantages. Intel considers new Xeon processor as its most important chip since Pentium Pro.

“The Intel Xeon processor 5500 series is the foundation for the next decade of innovation. These chips showcase groundbreaking advances in performance, virtualization and workload management, which will create opportunities to solve the world's most complex challenges and push the limits of science and technology,” said Patrick Gelsinger, senior vice president and general manager of Intel's digital enterprise group.

The new enterprise-class chips can automatically adjust to specified energy usage levels, and speed data center transactions and customer database queries. The Intel Xeon processor 5500 series, previously codenamed "Nehalem-EP," offers several breakthrough technologies that radically improve system speed and versatility. Technologies such as Intel Turbo Boost Technology, Intel Hyper-Threading Technology, integrated power gates, and Next-Generation Intel Virtualization Technology (VT) improved through extended page tables, allow the system to adapt to a broad range of workloads.

The main architectural enhancements for Intel Xeon 5500 are triple-channel DDR3 memory controller and the Quick Path Interconnect (QPI) bus, which improves scalability of multi-processor systems. The new Xeon also support multi-threading technology similar with Intel Hyper-Threading that was first unveiled back in 2002 as well as SSE4.2 instructions.

“Nehalem is a game changer in just about every way, especially performance. It overcomes most, if not all, the potential performance roadblocks associated with multi-core configurations. It creates a foundation for future processors, and it resets performance expectations, especially for applications requiring high I/O or memory bandwidth,” said Jim McGregor, industry analyst from InStat.

Another key enhancement of Intel Nehalem is completely redesigned cache sub-system. The new chips will feature 2nd level 512 entry translation look-aside buffer (in addition to 1st level TLB) in order to further reduce the so-called TLB miss rate, a completely new feature on x86 microprocessors. In addition, Intel Xeon 5500 processors (at least, in certain implementations) will have three-level cache hierarchy: 64KB L1 (32KB for data, 32KB for instructions), 256KB L2 cache per core, 8MB L3 cache per processor.

Besides, the new processors can execute 33% more concurrent micro-ops at the same time. Additional improvements include faster unaligned cache accesses and faster synchronization primitives. In order to exclude situations when execution units stand idle, Intel also implemented new 2nd level branch predictor.

The family of Intel Xeon processors on Nehalem micro-architecture is pretty broad – 15 different models – and aimed at different markets. Pricing of the new chips varies from $188 to $1600, depending on aim, performance, power consumption and other qualities of the chip. All the chips in the initial lineup contain four processing engines, except one, which is a dual-core offering. Besides, the majority have simultaneous multi-threading technology enabled.

More than 230 unique systems based on the Intel Xeon processor 5500 series are expected to be announced by more than 70 system manufacturers around the world – including a new Intel customer, Cisco, along with Dell, Fujitsu, HP, IBM, Sun Microsystems and others.