Agner`s CPU blog

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New Intel compiler version - still the same!
Author: Agner Fog Date: 2010-09-22 11:37

A new Intel C++ compiler version 12 has now been released as part of the new "Intel Parallel Composer 2011". The CPU dispatching methods are unchanged from version 11. Apparently, all that has come out of the legal battles over CPU dispatching is a notice on Intel's website that the compiler does not optimize equally for non-Intel microprocessors (see link).

The main difference between version 11 and version 12 of the compiler is that the latter has more features for splitting the code into parallel threads in order to take advantage of multi-core processors. I have not tested how these features work on non-Intel processors.

The settlement with AMD requires that Intel shall not include any Artificial Performance Impairment in any Intel product. I cannot find any change in the new compiler version that reflects this requirement.

While the wording of the AMD settlement with regard to CPU dispatching is much more far-reaching than the FTC settlement, it has had no apparent effect so far, perhaps because it is subject to interpretation. Likewise, the FTC have not succeeded in making Intel change their compiler and libraries - maybe because they don't have the power to do so, or maybe because they don't have sufficient specialized knowledge to counter the technical arguments of Intel's experts.

Anyway, the software community will still have to live with the technical problems. My best advice now is to override Intel's CPU dispatcher as explained in my C++ manual, or use another compiler.

 
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