Computer architecture refers to various aspects of computer system designs which can affect compatibility, performance, and interfacing. Some issues related to computer architecture can be processor word size, memory bus size, or protocol implementation.

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Is it possible to watch interrupts on Windows?

With my linux box I can do the following to watch interrupts live: watch -n1 "cat /proc/interrupts" Is there a way to do this on Windows systems, especially Windows 7?
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5answers
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Why can't you have both high instructions per cycle and high clock speed?

The Megahertz Myth became a promotional tactic due to differences between the PC's INTEL 8086 processor and Apple's Rockwell 6502 processor. The 8086 ran at 4.77MHz while the 6502 ran at 1MHz. ...
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2answers
4k views

Tool to retrieve information about which hard-disk is connected to which disk-controller (Windows)?

When servicing servers I often find lots of various disks connected to several HD-controllers. To find and replace a specific disk in a server filled with disks often becomes rather tedious. So the ...
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2answers
365 views

What architectural state is saved during context switch?

What architectural state is saved during context switch? As far as I know, what is saved is the following Set of registers including PC counter TLB (If it is not flushed...) what else ? Memory? ...
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2answers
868 views

Atomic operation. How does it guarantee consistency from hardware perspective?

Atomic operation. How does it guarantee consistency from hardware perspective ? How is it implemented in HW ? As far as I know, atomic instruction makes sure that when it is executed, no other ...
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3answers
273 views

Hardware. What is the difference between a port and a bank?

Especially, these days, the distinction between them is very confusing.. For example, NVidia's shared memory is 32-banked, so what they say is in one cycle, 32 data can come out at the same time... ...
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1answer
463 views

PCI Express and PSU Watts

I'm not sure if this question belongs here, so please be kind if it doesn't. I just happen to have two question that are related to the same project, that's why I combined them. I'm building a custom ...
0
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1answer
132 views

TLB access in SMT processors

In SMT (simultaneous multithreading) processors in which threads share the TLB, how does the TLB differentiate one thread's access from the other one? Each thread has its own set of pages loaded into ...
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2answers
135 views

Switch harddrive to different computer

I have an older amd system with a harddrive that has a fedora install on it. I have a newer intel system with a windows 7 install. Would I be able to put the old drive into the new machine and make ...
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1answer
250 views

What does R stand for in Von Neumann Architecture?

I would like some examples of modern day equipment that would equate with the 'R' in Von Neumann architecture. I am referring to Section 2.6 on page 3 of the PDF version of the "First Draft of a ...
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3answers
3k views

Why using hexadecimal in computer is better than using octal?

What are benefits that hexadecimal provides? And is it really octal is less common than hexadecimal?
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5answers
373 views

The idea that “nothing is ever truly deleted” doesn't make sense to me [closed]

Why do people say that nothing is ever truly deleted? Let's say I have a byte in my hard drive that contains the byte 0x00. If I overwrite it with the byte 0x01, how can anyone ever know that it ever ...
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1answer
4k views

How do hardware interrupts work compared to software interrupts?

To give you an impression of the level of detail I'm interested, one example. I know a system call ultimately leads to a trap which lets the processor store registers, switch to supervisor mode and ...
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2answers
1k views

Instruction per Cycle vs Increased Cycle Count

Increasing either instruction per cycle or increase cycle count both are valid design choice for processor manufactures. I understand theory, but it would be much clearer if I had some real life ...
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2answers
489 views

What type(s) of performance improvements to expect between architectures using QPI versus a FSB?

While comparing Intel's two new i7 processors, I noticed that the only difference between them apart from the L3 cache size and CPU speed is that one has QuickPath Interconnect, and that seems to ...
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3answers
701 views

Will a new processor with slower clockspeed run legacy applications faster?

I'm using Linux and have an old P4 with about 3 GHz clock speed. Will a newer chip that had slower clock speed run my legacy applications faster or slower? I only use one application at a time, an ...
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3answers
312 views

Are super computers made with just cache technology?

I was reading about memory hierarchy and I read that you can built a computer with just cache but it wouldn't be cost effective. I was wonderig if super computers are made with only cache technology?
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2answers
10k views

Front Side Bus and RAM speed

We encouted an odd question during a Cisco IT Esstenials course which didn't make sense. Which memory module has a front side bus speed of 200 MHz Possible choices were DDR-333 DDR-400 ...
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1answer
344 views

How to figure out the internal organization of my laptop

I am learning about buses and I/O. I want to figure out the various buses and the devices, controllers connected to it in my laptop. The website of my motherboard does not have a tech-spec. Neither ...
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4answers
746 views

Why can't memory clock speeds be as fast as the CPU speed?

I was reading that in old i386 based systems, the ram bus used to be the same speed as the CPU but when CPU frequencies increased, it became too hard to make RAM the same speed. Why can't we have 2GHz ...
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0answers
701 views

How to manufacture a computer from scratch? [closed]

I would like to learn to the smallest details how modern (x86) computer works. Let say I have all resources, time, people, facotry - everything I need to build modern computer except knowledge. This ...
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2answers
3k views

Virtual memory vs. Virtual address space

I know virtual memory is a paging file that computer uses to store a part of RAM on hard disk for a running process. But how different is Virtual address space? is it the RAM or hard disk or both?
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4answers
2k views

Does having more installed programs slow down a computer? [closed]

I was wondering does having more installed programs in a Windows slow down the computer (like make it laggier because it has to perform more "stuff")? What about Mac? (I don't have a computer. I ...
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5answers
21k views

Is a higher core count or higher clock speed more beneficial to a computer's performance? [closed]

With lowering silicon costs and rising consumer needs, manufacturers seem to be pushing one of two things: clock speed and/or core count. With the way things are going, it doesn't seem that clock ...
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2answers
116 views

Run 10 sets of headphones from a pc via 10 separate channels

We have a PC application that runs on Windows 7 platform that is designed to play sound to up to 10 different MP3's to up to 10 separate sound cards (ie. 10 different inputs playing to 10 different ...
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0answers
108 views

Processor Multimedia Extensions. How Useful are they actually? [closed]

Ever since the original Pentium, both AMD and Intel have been releasing competing multimedia extensions to their architectures, mmx, 3DNOW!, SSE, SSE2, SSE3, SSSE3, SSE4, AVX, XOP... So many, that I ...
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2answers
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what differences and relations are between logical and virtual memory?

I was wondering what differences and relations are between logical and virtual memory? How do their purposes differ? Are the relations and differences the same for logical and virtual addresses?
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4answers
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Understanding “Flat memory model” and “Segmented memory model”

I am trying to understand Flat memory model and Segmented memory model. Are Flat memory model and Segmented memory model determined by CPU architecture or OS or both? Or are they not determined by ...
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2answers
2k views

Is the size of a memory address and size of the address bus related?

My questions are about the relation between the size of an actual/physical address and the size of the address bus. If I understand correctly, the actual/physical address size is determined during ...
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3answers
6k views

What do the terms “asynchronous” and “synchronous” mean, with respect to the definition of an interrupt?

Quoted from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Interrupt: an interrupt is an asynchronous signal indicating the need for attention or a synchronous event in software indicating the need for a change ...
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2answers
617 views

Northbridge + Southbridge = Unitedbridge? Is the division likely to persist? [closed]

Okay, hardware based question. I was at shopping for laptops the other day and one of the salespeople was trying to talk up an integrated graphics system as opposed to a discrete graphics system. He ...
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2answers
9k views

How do I interpret the specification of memory (RAM)?

When looking at memory there are a few specifications that I don't understand and was hoping to have clarification on. What do these terms mean, and how do they affect the systems performance? Feel ...
5
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1answer
553 views

Intel's AES-NI performance: Isn't the hard drive the bottleneck?

Will I see a performance gain with AES-NI using dm-crypt/LUKS for hard drive system encryption? Isn't the hard drive the bottleneck even without hardware acceleration?
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18answers
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Can some software physically damage hardware?

I know a question similar to this one has been asked before however it was about installing a 32bit OS on a 64bit laptop. My question is more about damaging the hardware. I was wondering if there was ...
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6answers
17k views

How does a CPU 'know' what commands and instructions actually mean?

How does a processor 'know' what the different commands mean? I'm thinking of assembly level commands like MOV, PUSH, CALL, etc...
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2answers
474 views

Bits of CPU, architecture and OS

I was wondering if the bits of OS, of instruction set, of CPU registers, of data bus from CPU to memory, and of address bus from CPU to memory must be consistent in some sense and how? When we cay ...
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2answers
103 views

Why my computer working without harddisc with livecd, but with hardisk not working - computer not response to any signals? [closed]

History of problem: I formated computer (HP Pavalion Desktop). When I restart computer - computer come to first screen before boot and not response to any signals (f2, f10, ESC, etc..) I take out ...
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0answers
222 views

How to tell if an EXE is 32-bit or 64-bit? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Quick way to tell if an installed application is 64-bit or 32-bit What's the easiest way to know if a Windows EXE is 32-bit or 64-bit?
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1answer
3k views

Block diagram containing computer buses,motherboard

I am trying to understand computer architecture. In particular: - Physical view i.e. what all is packed inside the motherboard and what all outside - Conceptual view. how processor,memory,peripherals ...
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1answer
3k views

Harvard vs. Von Neumann architecture [closed]

Our teacher told us, that Harvard architecture is the most evolved and produced architecture today and towards future. But I think because of massive overhead of x86 and Von Neumann based ARM systems ...
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6answers
9k views

Difference between cache memory and register?

What is the difference between cache memory and registers?I know them by definition but why do we need the other when we have any one of them?
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6answers
18k views

Where exactly L1, L2 and L3 Caches located in computer?

Where exactly L1, L2 and L3 Caches Located in computer ? I know, we use Cache to increase performance by picking DATA and INSTRUCTIONS from Cache rather than Main Memory. Following are my questions ...
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4answers
3k views

How to build my own single-board computer?

For fun, I would like to build my own single-board computer which I can later program. I know there are already many development kits out there, sold by companies such as Altera and Xilinx, but I want ...
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10answers
45k views

How can I determine whether my processor is 32-bit or 64-bit?

How can I determine whether my processor is 32-bit or 64-bit? My processor is AMD Phenom 8450 triple-core.
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7answers
23k views

How to find the architecture of OS installed?

I'm using Core 2 Duo. So, from Intel website I found that it is 64-bit architecture CPU. Long back I've installed Ubuntu OS on this machine. But I'm not sure if I installed x86-32 or x86-64 version ...
4
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3answers
385 views

What hardware is at physical address 0x80000000 on powerpc New World Macintosh?

Open Firmware device tree gives no clue what device might decode at physical address 0x80000000 to 0x8008200 on a G4 New World Macintosh. The mmu has three adjacent Virtual=Real translations for that ...
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2answers
554 views

Role of a bus bridge [closed]

Simple question: What is the role of a bus bridge?
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5answers
5k views

Why multi core processors?

Why are chips containing more and more cores? Why not manufacture a larger single-core processor? Is it easier to manufacture? Is it to allow programs to multithread using seperate cores?
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5answers
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How is the processing capacity of modern devices compared with that used decades ago?

I saw on t.v. a description of the computer used in the first travel to the moon. I wonder if modern devices such as an smarthphone have already that same capacity? Does anyone have a link where ...
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3answers
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Relation between controllers, interfaces, adapt cards, chipsets, buses

I am confused about the following concepts and their relations: controllers, interfaces, adapters, chipsets, buses and north/south bridges. Can anyone point out how they are working together, what are ...