Multiprocessor Systems: Dual Celeronsby Anand Lal Shimpi on March 18, 1999 9:23 PM EST
- Posted in
|There are some people out there that will devote their lives to cutting corners. Not that there is anything wrong with trying to do something in an easier manner, but often times if the amount of energy spent looking for an easier way to accomplish a task were spent on actually accomplishing that task that person would be living a much more productive life.|
|A form of this type of personality is
something we can all relate to, the type of person that attempts to cut corners in order
to save money.
There is a fine line between needing something and wanting something and usually, most of us have a hard time establishing that line when placed in an electronics store surrounded by large TVs and powerful speakers, or when placed at a car dealership with fancy options and leather seats. In the end, whether you're purchasing a new TV or the latest sports car in metallic black, chances are that you will have cut at least one corner for the sake of saving a few bucks here or there. The reason is obvious, money doesn't grow on trees, and the material goods that dominate a significant portion of our lives cost money, a limited resource.
The same trend carries over into, you guessed it, computer hardware purchases. When building a new system from scratch you'll probably cut a few corners here and there, sometimes without even noticing it. You'll opt for a somewhat smaller case, a slightly less powerful speaker set, and most likely, that 24" Sony monitor won't be finding its way onto your desktop anytime soon either. Almost by definition, we are all, as humans, inherently creative in our own unique ways, and by looking around at the methods used to cut costs when buying computer parts, there is a definite level of creativity that goes in to every single purchase where cost is a consideration. The only real area where there has been a general lack of creativity in terms of "cost management" (aka not buying that 136GB hard drive you've always wanted) is in the high-end workstation/server market. The reason here is simple as well, high-end has always meant high-price, and if a company can get away with charging an arm and a leg for a "high-end" solution, then you better believe that they're going to charge an arm and a leg for that very solution.
Luckily, there happened to be an individual that managed to discover one of the very rare ways of being creative with cutting costs in the high-end workstation/server market. His name? Tomohiro Kawada of Kikumaru's Technical Laboratory. His claim to fame? Discovering and successfully implementing the modifications necessary for allowing Intel's "low-end" (and thus, low-cost) Celeron processor to run in a multiprocessor configuration. Unfortunately, Kawada's method for enabling multiprocessor support on the original Slot-1 Celeron and Celeron A processors was a bit over the edge for most users who didn't want to risk damaging their processors to try the neat trick. The trick involved physically "shaving" off, or drilling into, the actual PCB (Printed Circuit Board) of the Celeron processor as well as a number of other modifications to the processor in order to achieve success. While your average engineer would get a kick out of Kawada's method, it was quite impractical for the everyday user to explore.