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Linus Torvalds Tosses Intel CPU Aside To Make Way For a Ryzen Threadripper 3970X

AMD Ryzen Threadripper 3000-Series Processor

AMD Ryzen Threadripper 3000-Series Processor (Image credit: AMD)

Linus Torvalds, the founding father of Linux, is officially a member of Team Red. Torvalds announced the Linux Kernel 5.7 RC7 yesterday and also mentioned an exciting upgrade to his desktop PC.

Changes in life are hard to accept, especially when you've used the same brand of processor for 15 years. However, that didn't prevent Torvarlds from switching from his Intel processor to AMD's core-heavy Ryzen Threadripper 3970X. The creator of Linux didn't mention what processor he used previously, but his 'allmodconfig' test systems now rock 32 cores of Zen 2 firepower. 

For a bit of background information, the Ryzen Threadripper 3970X is built with TSMC's 7nm FinFET manufacturing process. The 32-core, 64-thread part ticks with a 3.7 GHz base clock and a 4.5 GHz boost clock. The processor offers 128MB of L3 cache and up to 64 lightning-fast PCIe 4.0 lanes.

In comparison to his previous (undisclosed) Intel processor, Trovalds says the Ryzen Threadripper 3970X represents a night and day upgrade and runs up to three times faster. Although he did admit that he won't take advantage of the full processing power right away, he expects the Ryzen Threadripper 3970X's prowess to come in handy during the next merge window.

AMD does offer more cores than Intel on all fronts, so Torvalds' transition to Team Red seems like a no-brainer. However, it did come as a surprise that the Linux guru would stop at 32 cores when AMD offers up to 64 cores in form of the Ryzen Threadripper 3990X. Regardless, we're just happy that Torvalds is enjoying his new system, and AMD probably couldn't be happier to show off the fact that the most high-profile figure in the Linux world is using one of its chips.

  • jkflipflop98
    In other news, Intel is still busy propping up his dilapidated and bug-ridden POS operating system as the largest contributor to the Linux kernel.
    Reply
  • mdd1963
    I'm sure that will make his command prompt inputs much more responsive! :)
    Reply
  • bit_user
    it did come as a surprise that the Linux guru would stop at 32 cores when AMD offers up to 64 cores in form of the Ryzen Threadripper 3990X.
    Maybe because the 64-core version cost twice as much and only compiled the kernel 5.2% faster, according to these benchmarks:

    https://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page=article&item=3990x-threadripper-linux
    Now, to be honest, scaling that poor sounds like a storage bottleneck (though it supposedly used a 1 GB Corsair Force MP600 NVMe drive), but it is awfully poor scaling to be simply bottlenecked by memory bandwidth.
    Reply
  • bit_user
    jkflipflop98 said:
    In other news, Intel is still busy propping up his dilapidated and bug-ridden POS operating system as the largest contributor to the Linux kernel.
    Ironically, using Intel's Clear Linux distro even benefited the Zen-2 powered ThreadRipper 3990X:

    https://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page=article&item=3990x-clear-linux
    Reply
  • bit_user
    mdd1963 said:
    I'm sure that will make his command prompt inputs much more responsive! :)
    It will, when your command prompt inputs are doing kernel builds, ...all while you're booting/running/testing other builds in various VMs.
    Reply