Intel, AMD both claim server speed records

It is so nice to see a return of competition in the CPU space. For too long it had been a one-horse race, with Intel on its own and AMD willing to settle for good enough. Revitalized with the Zen architecture, AMD is taking it to Intel once again, and you are the winner.

Both sides are proclaiming massive performance records, although in both cases they come with an asterisk next to them.

Intel’s announcement

In Intel’s case, it announced 95 new performance world records for its Intel Xeon Scalable processors using the most up-to-date benchmarks on hardware for major OEMs, including Dell, HPE, ASUS, and Super Micro, running SPECInt and SPECFP benchmarks as well as SAP HANA, ranging from single-socket systems up to eight-socket systems.

Even more impressive is that all systems tested included mitigations for the Spectre and Meltdown vulnerabilities. To mitigate those flaws in the CPU, some functions have to be disabled either in software or at the firmware level, and that can mean performance hits, sometimes significant hits.

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