PALM SPRINGS, Calif. ( ChipWire/EET) -- Intel Corp. Tuesday demonstrated its first working samples of Merced silicon. Merced is a 64-bit microprocessor that is the first implementation of the IA-64 architecture, which was jointly developed by Intel and Hewlett-Packard Co.
The display came on stage at the Intel Developer's Forum here, during the keynote speech by Craig Barrett, the company's president and CEO. The demo comes a little more than a month after Intel disclosed it has taped out the microprocessor.
Barrett showed a workstation-like platform, containing Merced, running operating systems Microsoft Windows 2000 as well as Linux. (Windows 2000 is the upcoming version of Windows NT. Although previously referred to as Windows 5.0., it is not a full 64-bit OS but rather a hybrid 32/64-bit offering.)
Significantly, Barrett did not mention the clock speed at which the Merced sample was running.
"These guys just gave it to me. I'm just happy the thing is up and running," Barrett said in a question-and-answer session with reporters.
The device is implemented in 0.18-micron CMOS, but Barrett wouldn't say when the processor will come to market. "We want it to come out as a very aggressive forward-looking product," he said. "It's a server/workstation product."
He added that the processor will not be targeted at the desktop anytime soon. "You'll have co-existence of 32 and 64 bits for a decade," he said.