Altera and XtremeData have announced that they are demonstrating their operational FPGA/Intel Xeon processor-based front side bus (FSB) module at the Intel Developer Forum. Equipped with an Altera high performance Stratix III FPGA, the XD2000i targets the Intel FSB at 1066 MHz for co-processing applications (with regard to this form of co-processing, see also the Programmable Logic Design mini-series FPGA-based hardware acceleration of C/C++ based applications Parts 1, 2, and 3).
The combination of an Intel Xeon 5300 series processor and Stratix III FPGA co-processor in the XD2000i module provides customers with the highest performance FSB accelerator available. The XD2000i provides high-performance application acceleration ranging from 10X to 100X compared to processors alone, while simultaneously reducing overall system power consumption. It is the ideal solution for accelerating applications such as mapping the human genome or data analytics for the financial market applications.
When XtremeData coprocessor modules are installed into commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) CPU platforms, the algorithmic parts of applications are substantially accelerated via parallelization and pipelining. The XD2000i is pin-compatible with and plugs directly into the processor socket of dual- or quad-socket servers. It was designed to stay within Intel's defined keep-out area, so customers can now integrate these in-socket accelerators in their Intel Xeon DP rack-mount servers, blade systems and ATCA platforms.
The Intel Xeon offers a high-bandwidth, low-latency interface to other processors and memory via the FSB interconnect. Placing the Stratix III FPGA in one of the Xeon sockets gives the coprocessor a high-speed link to memory as well as a fast connection to the host processor without requiring board modifications, while providing a simple hardware integration path. Stratix III FPGAs provide the XD module with an abundant amount of logic and enables Intel-based systems with approximately 1 million logic elements (LEs) and 2304 multipliers with a fast FSB processor interconnect.
Altera also plans to support the Intel QuickPath Interconnect interface in a new generation of the Stratix FPGA family. The QuickPath Interconnect will be used in future Intel processors to interface to other processors and memory.