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Intel Pentium 4 3066 MHz in the test: HyperThreading for the desktop

Intel Pentium 4 3066 MHz in the test: HyperThreading for the desktop

Das Bios

As already mentioned, the chipset alone is not a guarantee that Hyper-Threading is actually used. It is up to the mainboard manufacturers to provide their products with the appropriate BIOS updates so that the new technology can also be activated. Because Hyper-Threading is not activated by default, so that theoretically owners of motherboards that are not capable of Hyper-Threading can also enjoy the 'simple' 3 GHz of the new Pentium 4.

Hyper-Threading-Support from which BIOS version?
Mainboard revisionVersion number Asus P4PE from 1.02 from 1001 P4GE-B from 1.00 from 1001 P4T533 from 1.03 from 1005 P4T533-C from 1.03 from 1008 P4B533-E from 1.02 from 1011 P4B533 from 1.03 from 1011 P4B533-m from 1.01 from 1010 * So far only AsusHT has published support lists
Hyper-Threading must be can be deactivated at any time

Regarding this table, it should be said that we operated the Asus P4T533 Rev. 1.02 and the P4T533-C Rev. 1.01 without any major problems. With the P4T533, however, we had to actively cool the northbridge, as otherwise it would get too hot during continuous operation with two Seti instances. So you are on the safe side only with the mentioned board revision number and the corresponding BIOS.

The operating system

If the mainboard is correct and is also activated in the BIOS Hyper-Threading, it remains actually just one hurdle that still has to be overcome: the right operating system with the right kernel. As already mentioned in the HT basics, Windows XP Home and Professional as well as Windows 2000 or Linux from kernel version 2.4.18 are suitable for using this technology. Windows XP Home is certainly interesting in this list. This operating system does not actually support dual processors. However, this only applies to physical processors, the system can easily manage two logical processors.

Device manager without HT
Device manager with HT

But with the installationof the operating system it is unfortunately not done yet, because the correct kernel must be selected. If Windows is to make use of the two virtual processors, the multiprocessor kernel is mandatory. Only with it appear two processors in the task manager, the clear sign that Hyper-Threading is active and also works.

System load after Q3 bench without HT
System load after Q3 bench with HT
Seti @ Home only on CPU # 2

As a rule, Windows automatically detects the second processor and requests it if necessary a restart to change the kernel.

In the event that Windows should still work with the single-processor kernel, a change without reinstallation is easily possible in the Device Manager with a few clicks of the mouse. However, constant back and forth is not possible. Once you have decided on the multi-processor kernel, there is no way back to the old kernel, except of course a new installation.

On the next page: New record for consumption