10 Facts About Alpha 21364


Alpha 21364, code-named "Marvel", known as EV7 is a microprocessor developed by Digital Equipment Corporation, later Compaq Computer Corporation, that implemented the Alpha instruction set architecture.

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Alpha 21364 was revealed in October 1998 by Compaq at the 11th Annual Microprocessor Forum, where it was described as an Alpha 21264 with a 1.

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The Alpha 21364 was introduced on 20 January 2002 when systems using the microprocessor debuted.

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Alpha 21364 was originally intended to be succeeded by the Alpha 21464, code-named EV8, a new implementation of the Alpha ISA with four-way simultaneous multithreading.

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Development of the Alpha 21364 was most focused on features that would improve memory performance and multiprocessor scalability.

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Alpha 21364's core is based on the EV68CB, a derivative of the Alpha 21264.

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The Alpha 21264 core upon which the Alpha 21364 was based on was designed to use an external cache built from commodity SRAM, which has a significantly higher latency than the on-die Scache of the Alpha 21364.

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Compaq designed custom memory controllers for the Alpha 21364, giving them capabilities not found in standard RDRAM memory controllers such as having all the 128 pages open, reducing the access latency to those pages; and proprietary fault-tolerant features.

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The Alpha 21364 uses a directory cache coherence scheme where part of the memory is used to store Modified, Exclusive, Shared, Invalid coherency data.

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Alpha 21364 can connect to as many as 127 other microprocessors using two network topologies: shuffle and an 2D torus.

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