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A question of curiousity,
I understand [one thread per core] or with time slicing, [many threads one core] But, is there a way even through emulation, even with a performance cost, to...
how to say... "have many processors think they are one processor"

Its possibly an elementary question, but if you could provide me with even a Keyword to search by so that i can learn more. That would be awesome.

Note: My hypothetical application would be running a process that doesnt require real-time operation, Like a single threaded video encoder, or compression utility.

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closed as not a real question by Breakthrough, Simon Sheehan, 8088, ChrisF, BBlake Dec 18 '12 at 13:37

It's difficult to tell what is being asked here. This question is ambiguous, vague, incomplete, overly broad, or rhetorical and cannot be reasonably answered in its current form. For help clarifying this question so that it can be reopened, visit the help center.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

    
I dont think it is possible, not usefully anyway.. –  Karthik T Dec 12 '12 at 1:39
    
It's not really clear what you're asking. If they "think they are one processor", why aren't they? –  David Schwartz Dec 12 '12 at 1:42
    
@DavidSchwartz I think he wants to, somehow, merge 4 processors(cores) into 1 and boost performance on serial applications –  Karthik T Dec 12 '12 at 1:57
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I think you're attempting to describe "parallel processing", which is a major area of research. Basically either humans or specialized compilers need to "parallelize" the application software so that parts of it can execute on different processors. A non-trivial task. –  Daniel R Hicks Dec 12 '12 at 2:24
    
Well, n processors will “think they are one processor” if n – 1 of them are turned off. I don’t want to be flippant; I want to point out that I don’t understand your question, and I suspect that nobody else here does either. Can you try to explain it better? –  Scott Dec 12 '12 at 2:39

2 Answers 2

If there was a way to do this, we'd have processors with fewer cores. The reason we've gone to multi-core processors is that we don't know how to make cores any faster than they already are.

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Actually, if there was a sufficiently general and effective way to do this we'd have processors with far more cores. –  Daniel R Hicks Dec 12 '12 at 2:25
    
@DanielRHicks: No. If there was any known way to make one super-fast core, that's what we'd have. Its internal details would be totally invisible from the outside. –  David Schwartz Dec 12 '12 at 2:27
    
The point is that it's easy to make multiple cores, but putting them to use is the problem. If "parallelizing" a program were simple then massively parallel laptops would be the norm. But four cores is about the most that a "personal" computer can effectively use. –  Daniel R Hicks Dec 13 '12 at 1:11

Maybe what you are thinking of is automatic parallelization. This process happens at a software level, though, in compilers, not at a hardware level. A parallelizing compiler takes single-threaded code and tries to transform it into multithreaded code, which can then run in parallel on multiple processors. I get the impression that this sort of thing is still at a research stage, though, and is not commonly used in the real world.

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