Do the two "digital"** cores even serve a purpose? Or are they just there to impress those that don't understand what it really is?
HyperThreading (HT), Always a hard thing to understand for people that dont know what it is and i dont blame them on it.
For me, im starting to not like the "2 or 4 real core and (equivalent #) logical core" combo thing as it doesn't make it clear to a good amount people what it fully is. I agree with the names but its how it's implemented i dont like. I'll explain my way in a sec below.
What is HT? it is 2 threads on one cpu core. What this allows is 2 different data sets to be processed at one time. On the OS, it sees these threads as cores.
Now what do people mean by logical and real cores? Well.... best way i can describe it,
i view HT as more or less diving a core into 2 without it truly making it 2. Kind like having a HDD partition in two to have a C:\ and D:\ drive to store different stuff in different sections (like having Windows xp and windows 7) without having 2 HDD's.
So i would say it's 2 real cores thats divide up into 4 logical cores. That should make better sense.
reason for having HT,
On the end user perspective: it can boost applications that need as many threads as possible or if your just a really good multi tasker.
On the hardware side, Cpu's are very powerful these days. if we didn't have HT, a cpu core can never be fully used at 1 time. Thats the main reason why HT came out (to my understanding that is) is due to the fact that the Intel P4's (where HT was first implemented on desktop) came out, a single thread was very slow, so the cpu had to wait to get data large amounts of data. When HT was put on them, they were much better utilized on all of it's resources.
Now I hope this clears some things up of what HT is.
Also welcome to the toms forums
EDIT: Well, if i'd found this video sooner, i wouldn't have to type all that stuff out.
(just be ready to pause if you find the video moving to fast.)