I'm thinking about buying a new motherboard/cpu combo and doing a fresh Suse 10 install on it. Is it worthwhile for me to get a dual core processor? I know that the available processor technology is about to make a big jump in the next year. Does anybody recommend going with dual core/not going with dual core/going with a specific processor? Is there good Linux kernel support for dual core? I'll probably be spending $150-200 more for it.
Thanks in advance...
linux support for dual core vastly exceeds windows support, simply because linux has had multicore support for much longer. if you're using suse, all should be detected. if you ever find yourself compiling your own kernel, be sure to enable SMP support for 3 cores (1 more than your number of cores). you should see the biggest improvements in compile times and other threaded tasks. however, i recommend you wait for Intel's Core Duo and AMDs new Athlons to become widely available. why? cause the prices of the current 939 X-2s should plummet after this. get yourself a bargain (it's what i'm planning on doing ;))
Hypothetical: If you had to buy the computer next week, would you go dual-core? Or would it not be enough bang for your buck (even if you're stuck with the same computer for a few years)?
Any technology based product purchase decision really faces the question you asked.
There is no easy answer to the question, or at least no easy way to respond. What you have to think about is if the savings will be worth it to you or not. You need to determine how great your need is to have bleeding edge technology or something a bit less.
Personally, acquiring the non-bleeding edge technology is not a problem for me. My needs are not that of a massive data processing center and likewise I am not a gammer and therefore don't need the absolute max out of hardware in order to win out over my opponent within the game through what advantage the bleeding edge technology will give me.
I tend to hold onto my hardware until it either quits and I can't get replacement parts due to its age or until the demands of the operating systems and programming environments and the like exceed the ability of the hardware.
Keep in mind that when you buy bleeding edge technology and pay the premium price for it, you can be assured that within a relatively short period of time (like a year or so) a newer and more improved version of what you just bought will be available.
Hey. I'm in a similar boat as Seandiggity. :confused:
My budget is meager. I have basic needs met, but not much at all in the way of spending money (I mainly buy books and eat out on a rare occasion).
While the money is personal to my own preferences, a smidge further clarification of what I'd be getting would be extremely helpful.
Basically, I get a new computer every 3-4 years. I could go with an Athlon 64 3400 or an Athlon 64 3800 dual core. It'd be an extra $130 minimum. I'm a non-gamer but at some point soon I'll be doing audio recording and editing using programs equivalent to Reason 3.0 and Pro Tools.
There's only 2 real questions for me here, as someone who will be doing a lot of audio recording/editing.
1. About how much performance enhancement will I get going from the 3400 to the 3800 dual core? (if it can be quantified, 15% or so? 25%?)
2. What is the projected roadmap? If two years from now there are 6ghz 4-core processors (say a 250% improvement), then $130 for a 25% improvement might be better off put aside for the future.
The junkyarddog is getting lonely waiting for help. Be careful; he just might have to poop on your lawn to get your attention...:cry:
Presently, dual core cpus only seem to shine when you are running multiple applications simultaneously or when running multi-threaded applications. So if you are just going to be running the one application, just go for outright speed now.
However, a few years down the line, more and more programs will be multi-threaded so that 2nd core will come in handy, but by then there will be quad+ core cpu's out for reasonable prices. Also, both Intel and AMD plan to release Tri and Quad core processors in 2007 and Intel is talking about 100+ cores by 2020.
If I were building a system now, and the price difference betweeen single and dual core was ~$100 or so for the same processing speed, I would go with the dual core, but any more than that, it will be just a waste, just my $0.02.