There are the two different main manufactures of CPU chips is Intel and AMD. There are from time to time smaller competitors that tend to come and go and they do not own much of the market. This free CPU essay explains how a CPU is organized and that it may vary from CPU to CPU. The basic organization of a CPU is the motherboard system bus. When the motherboard system bus enters the CPU it is frequently referred to as the frontside bus and usually uses a 64-bit wide data path. Inside the CPU you have the controllers that mange the basic functions of the CPU and that mange communications between the CPU to the motherboard and other components within the CPU. The other components are one or more ALUs and internal cache. The ALU is responsible for performing complex calculations. Having multiple ALUs inside a single processor is what gave the earlier Pentiums their multiprocessing capabilities. Communication between the controller and the ALUs uses a 32-bit wide internal data bus. The bus system that supports the communication between the cache and the ALUs and the controller is referred to as the backside bus.
The most important thing you need to know about a processor is the speed in which it processes information and there are several ways to measure the speed and they can be misleading. The speeds differ from inside the processor and outside of the processor. You can measure the processor speed in GHz, the system bus in MHz which is the limiting factor of the speed for your new computer. The ratio between the processor speed and the system bus speed is known as the multiplier. In some older system you may have to configure the multiplier in the CMOS setting but however the newer models will do this automatically for you.
CPU manufactures have come up with different ways to making the CPU do more work faster. True multiprocessing requires multiple processors and your system has to be designed to hold more than one CPU on a single motherboard. Another option is the dual core processors, which means incorporating multiple processors with multiple ALUs inside a single CPU. The ALUs process information independently but share a single controller.
Cache memory uses SRAM where the rest of the system uses DRAM. SRAM is more expensive than DRAM.SRAM can hold its memory as long as there is power to it. There are three types of cache L1 cache, L2 cache and L3 cache. L1 cache is housed on the processor chip itself. L2 cache is inside the processor housing but is not on the processor chip itself. L3 cache is inside the processor housing but is located further away from the processor chip than L2 cache.
There are many varieties of sockets in which a processor will fit. The main two sockets that are used with today's processors are the LGA 775 used for Intel and Socket 754 used for AMD.
The ZIF uses a lever to gently lock the CPU into the socket without damaging the CPU. The optimal temperature for a CPU is 90 - 110 F or 32 - 43 C. You can check your system temperature in the CMOS. There are a few solutions to controlling the heat for your CPU. You can use a thermal compound between the CPU and the heat sink. The heat sink draws the heat from the CPU up to the CPU fan to draw heat away from the CPU and expellees it out of the computer case. If you're CPU gets to hot it will cause your computer to shutdown for no apparent reason.
Two Major Manufactures for CPUs in Today's Market
How a CPU is organized (this will vary from CPU to CPU)
The motherboard system bus carries information into and out of the CPU.
When the system bus enters the CPU it is referred to as the Frontside Bus.(usually uses a 64-bit wide data path)
The speeds differ from inside the processor than outside the speed.
Usually measured in GHz
Usually measured in MHz
Ratio between processor and system bus
System bus speed x multiplier = processor speed
Advances in Processing Speed
Dual Core Processors
Faster, but more expensive
Holds memory without being “refreshed”
Memory must be “refreshed”
On the processor chip
Inside the processor housing
Not on the processor chip
Inside the processor housing
Further away from the processor chip
The two most common sockets used today is:
Intel - Pentium 4 and Celeron
AMD - Athlon, Sempron, Opteron
Zero Insertion Force
Lever used to gently lock CPU into socket without damaging it
90 - 110 F
32 - 43 C
Check system temperature in CMOS
Heat (there is 3 solutions to heat)
Forms thermal seal between CPU and heat sink
Finger-like projections (fins)
Draws heat away from CPU
The A+ Exam expects you to know:
Dual core processors
Terms and definitions (Free CPU Essay - Hardware - CPUs)
CPU-Stands for "Central Processing Unit." This is the pretty much the brain of your computer. It processes everything from basic instructions to complex functions. Any time something needs to be computed, it gets sent to the CPU. Every day, it's computed this; compute that -- you'd think the CPU would need a break after awhile. But no -- it just keeps on processing. The CPU can also be referred to simply as the "processor."
System bus-While the wheels on the bus may go "round and round," data on a computer's bus goes up and down. Each bus inside a computer consists of set of wires that allow data to be passed back and forth. Most computers have several buses that transmit data to different parts of the machine. Each bus has a certain size, measured in bits (such as 32-bit or 64-bit), that determines how much data can travel across the bus at one time. Buses also have a certain speed, measured in megahertz, which determines how fast the data can travel.
Frontside bus-The FSB connects the computer's processor to the system memory (RAM) and other components on the motherboard. These components include the system chipset, AGP card, PCI devices, and other peripherals. Because the FSB serves as the main path from the processor to the rest of the motherboard, it is also called the "system bus."The speed of the frontside bus is measured in Megahertz or Gigahertz, just like the processor. Most computers' processors run faster than their system buses, so the FSB speed is typically a ratio of the processor speed. For example, a Pentium 4 processor that runs at 2.4 GHz may have an FSB speed of only 400 MHz The CPU to FSB ratio would be 6:1. A Power Mac G5, however, with a 2.0 GHz processor, has a 1.0 GHz frontside bus. Therefore, its CPU to FSB ratio is 2:1. The smaller the ratio, the more efficiently the processor can work. Therefore, faster frontside bus speeds lead to faster overall performance. When the CPU to FSB ratio is high, the processor often has to wait for data to be sent out over the system bus before getting new data to process. For this reason, the FSB can be a bottleneck in a computer's performance. So if you are looking for a fast computer, don't just check the processor speed, but find out what the frontside bus speed is as well.
Controller- The controller card, or simply "controller," is a piece of hardware that acts as the interface between the motherboard and the other components of the computer. For example, hard drives, optical drives, printers, keyboards, and mice all require controllers to work. Most computers have all the necessary controllers built in the motherboard as chips, not full-sized cards. However, if you add additional components such as a SCSI hard drive, you may need to add a controller card as well. Controller cards are typically installed in one of the computer's PCI slots.
ALU- Stands for "Arithmetic Logic Unit." An ALU is an integrated circuit within a CPU or GPU that performs arithmetic and logic operations. Arithmetic instructions include addition, subtraction, and shifting operations, while logic instructions include Boolean comparisons, such as AND, OR, XOR, and NOT operations. ALUs are designed to perform integer calculations. Therefore, besides adding and subtracting numbers, ALUs often handle the multiplication of two integers, since the result is also an integer. However, ALUs typically do not perform division operations, since the result may be a fraction, or a "floating point" number. Instead, division operations are usually handled by the floating-point unit (FPU), which also performs other non-integer calculations. While the ALU is a fundamental component of all processors, the design and function of an ALU may vary between different processor models. For example, some ALUs only perform integer calculations, while others are designed to handle floating point operations as well. Some processors contain a single ALU, while others include several arithmetic logic units that work together to perform calculations. Regardless of the way an ALU is designed, its primary job is to handle integer operations. Therefore, a computer's integer performance is tied directly to the processing speed of the ALU.
Internal cache- A cache memory located within a microprocessor chip itself. Also known as internal cache; level 1 cache.
Internal bus- A bus that operates only within the internal circuitry of the CPU, communicating among the internal caches of memory that are part of the CPU chips design. This bus is typically rather quick and is independent of the rest of the computers operations.
Cache- There is many different types of caches but they all serve the same purpose. A cache stores recently-used information in a place where it can be accessed extremely fast. For example, a Web browser like Internet Explorer uses a cache to store the pages, images, and URLs of recently visited Web sites on your hard drive. With this neat strategy, when you visit a page you have recently been to, the pages and images don't have to be downloaded to your computer all over again. Because accessing your computer's hard disk is much faster than accessing the Internet, caching Web sites can speed up Web browsing significantly. Most Web browsers allow you to adjust the size of the cache in browser preferences. Another common type of cache is a disk cache. This stores information you have recently read from your hard disk in the computer's RAM, or memory. Since accessing RAM is much faster than reading data off the hard disk, this can help you access common files and folders on your hard drive much faster. Another type of cache is a processor cache which stores small amounts of information right next to the processor. This helps make the processing of common instructions much more efficient, thereby speeding up computation time.
Backside bus- the backside bus transfers data to and from the computer's secondary cache. The secondary or L2 cache stores frequently used functions and other data close to the processor. This allows the computer's CPU to work more efficiently since it can repeat processes faster. When the processor needs information from the L2 cache, it is sent over the backside bus. Because this process needs to be extremely fast, the clock speed of the backside bus cannot afford to lag behind. For this reason, the backside bus is often as fast as the processor.
Processor speed- Most computer applications require that the computer system meets minimum requirements in order for the installation to run. One of those requirements is processor speed. Processor speed measures (in megahertz or gigahertz; MHz or GHz) the number of instructions per second the computer executes
System bus speed- The primary pathway between the CPU and memory. The speed is derived from the number of parallel channels (16 bit, 32 bit, etc.) and clock speed. Also known as a "frontside bus," it is faster than the peripheral bus (PCI, ISA, etc.), but slower than the backside bus.
GHz- One gigahertz is equal to 1,000 megahertz (MHz) or 1,000,000,000 Hz. It is commonly used to measure computer processing speeds. For many years, computer CPU speeds were measured in megahertz, but after personal computers eclipsed the 1,000 MHz mark around the year 2000, gigahertz became the standard measurement unit. After all, it is easier to say "2.4 Gigahertz" than "2,400 Megahertz." While gigahertz is most commonly used to measure processor speed, it can also measure the speed of other parts of the computer, such as the RAM and backside cache. The speed of these components, along with other parts of the computer, also impacts the computer's overall performance. Therefore, when comparing computers, remember the number of gigahertz is not the only thing that matters. Abbreviation: GHz.
MHz- One megahertz (abbreviated: MHz) is equal to 1,000 kilohertz, or 1,000,000 hertz. It can also be described as one million cycles per second. Megahertz is used to measure wave frequencies, as well as the speed of microprocessors. Radio waves, which are used for both radio and TV broadcasts, are typically measured in megahertz. For example, FM radio stations broadcast their signals between 88 and 108 MHz When you tune to 93.7 on your radio, the station is broadcasting at a frequency of 93.7 MHz Megahertz is also used to measure processor clock speeds. This measurement indicates how many instruction cycles per second a processor can perform. While the clock speeds of processors in mobile devices and other small electronics are still measured in megahertz, modern computer processors are typically measured in gigahertz. Abbreviation: MHz
Multiplier- ratio between processor and system bus
Multiprocessing- the ability to perform multiple functions simultaneously
Dual Core processors- Dual-core refers to a CPU that includes two complete execution cores per physical processor. It has combined two processors and their caches and cache controllers onto a single integrated circuit silicon chip). Dual-core processors are well-suited for multitasking environments because there are two complete execution cores instead of one, each with an independent interface to the frontside bus. Since each core has its own cache, the operating system has sufficient resources to handle most compute intensive tasks in parallel. Multi-core is similar to dual-core in that it is an expansion to the dual-core technology which allows for more than two separate processors.
SRAM- Stands for "Static Random Access Memory." I know it is tempting to pronounce this term as "Sram," but it is correctly pronounced "S-ram." SRAM is a type of RAM that stores data using a static method, in which the data remains constant as long as electric power is supplied to the memory chip. This is different than DRAM (dynamic RAM), which stores data dynamically and constantly needs to refresh the data stored in the memory. Because SRAM stores data statically, it is faster and requires less power than DRAM. However, SRAM is more expensive to manufacture than DRAM because it is built using a more complex structure. This complexity also limits the amount of data a single chip can store, meaning SRAM chips cannot hold as much data as DRAM chips. For this reason, DRAM is most often used as the main memory for personal computers. However, SRAM is commonly used in smaller applications, such as CPU cache memory and hard drive buffers. It is also used in other consumer electronics, from large appliances to small children's toys.
DRAM- Stands for "Dynamic Random Access Memory." DRAM is a type of RAM that stores each bit of data on a separate capacitor. This is an efficient way to store data in memory, because it requires less physical space to store the same amount of data than if it was stored statically. Therefore, a DRAM chip can hold more data than an SRAM (static RAM) chip of the same size can. However, the capacitors in DRAM need to constantly be refreshed to keep their charge, so DRAM requires more power than SRAM. Still, because DRAM can hold more data than SRAM and because it is significantly less expensive to manufacture, DRAM is the most common type of memory found in personal computer systems. While there are many types of DRAM available, the most common type is synchronous DRAM SDRAM, which is a faster version of standard DRAM. This is the type of memory most computers use for their main system memory. If you choose to upgrade your computer's SDRAM, check your machine's requirements to see if the memory modules must be installed in pairs. If so, you will need to replace two modules at once and they must be the same size (i.e. two 1GB SDRAM memory modules).
L1 cache- (Level 1 cache) A memory bank built into the CPU chip or packaged within the same module as the chip. Also known as the "primary cache," an L1 cache is the fastest memory in the computer, and it is closest to the CPU. The L1 cache feeds the processor.
L2 cache- (Level 2 cache) A memory bank built into the CPU chip packaged within the same module or built on the motherboard. The L2 cache feeds the L1 cache, and its memory is slower than L1 memory. The L2 cache feeds the L1 cache, which feeds the processor.
L3 cache- (Level 3 cache) A memory bank built onto the motherboard or within the CPU module. The L3 cache feeds the L2 cache, and its memory is typically slower than the L2 memory, but faster than main memory. The L3 cache feeds the L2 cache, which feeds the L1 cache, which feeds the processor.
Sockets- When a computer program needs to connect to a local or wide area network such as the Internet, it uses a software component called a socket. The socket opens the network connection for the program, allowing data to be read and written over the network. It is important to note that these sockets are software, not hardware, like a wall socket. So, yes, you have a much greater chance of being shocked by a wall socket than by a networking socket. Sockets are a key part of Unix and Windows-based operating systems. They make it easy for software developers to create network-enabled programs. Instead of constructing network connections from scratch for each program they write, developers can just include sockets in their programs. The sockets allow the programs to use the operating system's built-in commands to handle networking functions. Because they are used for a number of different network protocols (i.e.HTTP, FTP, telnet, and e-mail), many sockets can be open at one time.
ZIF- Stands for "Zero Insertion Force." ZIF is a type of CPU socket on a computer motherboard that allows for the simple replacement or upgrade of the processor. Processors that use a ZIF socket can easily be removed by pulling a small release lever next to the processor and lifting it out. The replacement processor is then placed in the socket and secured by pushing the lever in the opposite direction -- hence the phrase, "zero insertion force." I suppose there is some force required to push the lever, but it is significantly less than non-ZIF sockets, which require special tools to force the processor out.
CMOS- Stands for "Complementary Metal Oxide Semiconductor." This technology is typically used in making transistors. The "complementary" part of the term unfortunately does not mean these semiconductors are free. Instead, it refers to how they produce either a positive or negative charge. Because CMOS-based transistors only use one charge at a time, they run efficiently, using up very little power. This is because the charges can stay in one state for a long period of time, allowing the transistor to use little or no power except when needed. Because of their wonderful efficiency, processors that use CMOS-based transistors can run at extremely high speeds without getting too hot and going up in flames. You may also find CMOS memory in your computer, which holds the date and time and other basic system settings. The low power consumption of CMOS allows the memory to be powered by a simple Lithium battery for many years.
Thermal compound- A paste that is applied between a microprocessor and heatsink. This paste fills in any tiny gaps that may be present on the visibly flat surfaces of the microprocessor package and heatsink. Without thermal compound cooling may be less efficient, as the heat sink and microprocessor package may have air gaps between them. Thermal compound has much more efficient heat exchange properties than air.
Heat sink- A computer's CPU may perform millions of calculations every second. As the processor continues to work at a rapid pace, it begins to generate heat. If this heat is not kept in check, the processor could overheat and eventually destroy itself. Fortunately, CPUs include a heat sink, which dissipates the heat from the processor, preventing it from overheating. The heat sink is made out of metal, such as a zinc or copper alloy, and is attached to the processor with a thermal material that draws the heat from away the processor towards the heat sink. Heat sinks can range in size from barely covering the processor to several times the size of the processor if the CPU requires it. Most heat sinks also have "fins," which are thin slices of metal that are connected to the base of the heat sink. These additional pieces of metal further dissipate the heat by spreading it over a much larger area. A fan is often used to cool the air surrounding the heat sink, which prevents the heat sink from getting too hot. This configuration is referred to as a heat sink and fan or HSF combination. While heat sinks are used in nearly all computer CPUs, they have become commonplace in video card processors, or GPUs, as well.
CPU fan- A fan mounted directly over the integrated-circuit chip containing a computer's central processing unit to prevent overheating.CPU ESSAY CONCLUSION
I hope you found this CPU ESSAY to very informative and useful to you. I learned a lot about the CPU and how they are made and how they work. I also found out that if my computer just decides to shut down for no reason but then reboots after thirty minutes that my CPU fan has probably went bad on me. Thanks you for reading my free CPU essay.