Intel Launches Optane DC Persistent Memory Compatible with DDR4 DIMMs

Intel and Micron jointly announced 3D Xpoint technology in 2015 that promised to be 1,000 times faster and endurant than NAND flash, and 10 times denser than conventional DRAM. Products were launched in 2017 under the Optane brand with somewhat lower specifications starting with enterprise PCIe SSDs, followed by Optane M.2 cards, and Optane PCIe SSDs for the consumer market which do improve performance for very specific tasks. But beside storage devices, Intel also planned to launch Optane memory that fits into RAM slot, and they’ve finally done that with their Optane DC Persistent Memory fitting into DDR4 DIMMs with capacity ranging from 128GB to 512GB. The Optane DC Persistent Memory modules are made for the datacenter, and will be supported by the next generation of Intel’s Xeon server platforms. The module are sampling now  with mass production planned for later this year, but only to select customer. Broad availability is only scheduled for 2019. In the meantime, the company …

UP AI Edge Enables Artificial Intelligence on the Edge with Intel CPU, GPU, VPU and FPGA Solutions (Crowdfunding)

UP-Squared AI Vision Development Kit

Back in February of this year, AAEON introduced their UP AI Edge family of products with UP AI Core mini PCIe card based on Intel Movidius Myriad 2 VPU (Vision Processing Unit), and UP Core Plus board powered by a choice of Apollo Lake processors, and supporting AI Plus FPGA and AI Net Ethernet expansion boards. The company has now launched a Kickstarter campaign for those boards, and added several new products including Vision Plus with three Movidius Myriad 2 VPUs, AI Core M2 with two Movidius Myriad2 VPU in M.2 2280 form factor, as well as the Up Squared AI vision development kit for OpenVINO toolkit. I won’t go through the products announced in February, but let’s have look at the new boards and cards. Vision Plus Board Vision Plus Specifications: VPU – 3x Intel Movidius Myriad 2 VPUs with 512 MB DDR Connectivity – 1x Gigabit Ethernet USB – 2x USB 3.0 port Expansion – 1x mPCIEe for …

Intel NUC Kit NUC7PJYH Review – An Intel Gemini Lake Pentium Silver J5005 Barebone Mini PC

When Intel released their latest NUC Gemini Lake mini PCs they prioritized cost over performance. As a result the processor they chose for the ‘Intel NUC 7 Essential’ mini PC is somewhat underwhelming. Fortunately they released another model in the series, the rather misleadingly named ‘Intel NUC Kit NUC7PJYH’ which is is actually a ‘barebones’ mini PC just needing a stick or two of RAM and an SSD for storage. It contains an Intel Pentium Silver Processor J5005 SOC which is a quad core processor bursting up to 2.80 GHz together with a slightly more powerful Intel UHD Graphics 605 processor that is capable of 4K support at 60Hz. Visually it is no different to the Celeron NUC reviewed earlier in that it is physically small consisting of an approximately 4.5″ square case about 2″ tall with a distinctive front panel that includes the power button and a couple of USB ports with the rest of the ports including two …

Intel Tremont Will Succeed Goldmont Plus Microarchitecture

Goldmont Plus is the microarchitecture found in Gemini Lake processors, and products are just starting to get to market as we’ve seen with our recent Intel June Canyon NUC mini PC review. But we already know the successor of the microarchitecture thanks to a programming document entitled “Intel Architecture Instruction Set Extensions and Future Features Programming Reference” which references “Future Tremont and later” micro-architecture. Here the full list of new instructions listed in the document: CLWB – Force cache line write-back without flush GFNI – Galois Field New Instructions ENCLV – SGX oversubscription instructions Split Lock Detection – detection and cause an exception for split locks CLDEMOTE – Cache line demote instruction Direct store – MOVDIRI and MOVDIR64B User wait – TPAUSE, UMONITOR, UMWAIT That does not give much clue, but Wikichip found a patch submitted to the Linux Kernel mailing list on March 1st, that reveals a bit more: Add perf core PMU support for Intel Tremont CPU cores: …

Status of Embedded GPU Ecosystem – Linux/Mesa Upstream Support (ELC 2018 Video)

The Embedded Linux Confernce is on-going, and the Linux Foundation has been uploading videos about talks in a timely manner on YouTube. I checked out at RISC-V keynote yesterday, but today I’ve watched a talk by Robert Foss (his real name, not related to FOSS) from Collabora entitled “Progress in the Embedded GPU Ecosystem”, where he discusses open source software support in Linux/Mesa from companies and reverse-engineering support. The first part deals with the history of embedded GPU support, especially when it comes to company support. Intel was the first and offers very good support for their drivers, following by AMD who also is a good citizen. NVIDIA has the Nouveau driver but they did not really backed it up, and Tegra support is apparently sponsored by an aircraft supplier. Other companies have been slower to help, but Qualcomm has made progress since 2015 and now support all their hardware, Broadcom has a “one man team” handling VideoCore IV/V,  and …

Vulkan 1.1 and SPIR-V 1.3 Specifications Released

The Khronos Group released Vulkan 1.0 specifications in 2015 as a successor of OpenGL ES, compatible with OpenGL ES 3.1 or greater capable GPU, and taking less CPU resources thank to – for instance – better use of multi-core processors with support for multiple command buffers that can be created in parallel. A year later, we saw Vulkan efficiency in a demo, since then most vendors have implemented a Vulkan driver for their compatible hardware across multiple operating systems, including Imagination Technologies which recently released Vulkan drivers for Linux. The Khronos Group has now released Vulkan 1.1 and the associated SPIR-V 1.3 language specifications. New functionalities in Vulkan 1.1: Protected Content – Restrict access or copying from resources used for rendering and display, secure playback and display of protected multimedia content Subgroup Operations – Efficient mechanisms that enable parallel shader invocations to communicate, wide variety of parallel computation models supported Some Vulkan 1.0 extensions are now part of Vulkan 1.1 …

Intel June Canyon (Gemini Lake) NUCs Now Up for Pre-order for $130 and Up

This morning, I was informed that Intel had now published product pages for June Canyon NUC kits, mini PC, and board powered by the company’s latest Gemini Lake processors with four models: Intel NUC 7 Essential NUC7CJYSAL – Mini PC with Windows 10 based on Intel Celeron J4005 dual core processor (4M Cache, up to 2.70 GHz) with 32GB flash, 4GB RAM Intel NUC Kit NUC7PJYH – Barebone mini PC with  Intel Pentium Silver J5005 quad core processor (4M Cache, up to 2.80 GHz) Intel NUC Kit NUC7CJYH – Barebone mini PC with Intel Celeron J4005 dual core processor (4M Cache, up to 2.70 GHz) Intel NUC Board NUC7PJYB – Board based on Intel Pentium Silver J5005 quad core processor (4M Cache, up to 2.80 GHz) We’ve already published Intel June Canyon NUCs’ specifications, so I won’t go through it again in this post, and instead I looked for places where the devices may be for sale. While I could …

Intel Gemini Lake NUC7CJY/NUC7PJY Kits and Mini PC Specifications Released

Based on Intel NUC 2018/2019 roadmap published, we expected the first Intel Gemini Lake NUC mini PC to launch right at the end of 2017, but there’s been some delays. Since then we’ve learned Gemini Lake mini PC from third parties should launch around the end of March / beginning of April, and the official Intel GLK NUCs might launch around that time frame, or maybe a little earlier, because today, I’ve been informed the specifications for NUC7CJY/NUC7PJY kits and mini PC had been released on Intel website. Both variants have basically the same specifications expect NUC7CJY comes with a Celeron processor, and NUC7PJY with a Pentium Silver processor: SoC Intel NUC Kit NUC7CJYH / Intel NUC Mini PC NUC7CJYS –  Dual core Intel Celeron J4005 processor @ 2.0 GHz / 2.70 GHz (Turbo) with 4MB cache, Intel HD Graphics 600; up to 10 TDP Intel NUC NUC7PJYH –  Quad core Intel Pentium Silver J5005 processor @ 1.5 GHz / 2.80 …