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Multiprocessor Validation of the Pentium Pro
November 1996 (vol. 29 no. 11)
pp. 47-53

While working on its newest microprocessor, the Pentium Pro, Intel was aware that many manufacturers wanted the company to quickly supply them with high-performance products suitable for multiprocessor systems. In the past, multiprocessor systems have taken a year longer than uniprocessor systems to introduce because of the need to develop and validate the additional functionality. So, the company had to find a way to make sure the Pentium Pro would be multiprocessor functional at first silicon. The process was even more challenging because Intel wanted to deliver a production system within a year of first silicon. Intel subsequently developed a test methodology to validate multiprocessor functionality. Intel used a variety of methods, including self-checking test templates, random test generation, microbenchmarks, and such industry-standard benchmarks as parallel scientific code and large database workloads. The company discovered that it could also use its presilicon validation methodology in the postsilicon environment. In addition, Intel discovered that multiprocessor validation can find problems that also affect uniprocessor functionality and that might be difficult to test in a uniprocessor environment.

Citation:
Deborah T. Marr, Subramanian Natarajan, Shreekant Thakkar, Richard Zucker, "Multiprocessor Validation of the Pentium Pro," Computer, vol. 29, no. 11, pp. 47-53, Nov. 1996, doi:10.1109/2.544237
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