Ultimate Dual Core Help Thread

Okay, Im gonna have a list of questions or problems. If you help with or answer one, please state the number that coresponds with it.

#1. Optimizer, Driver, MS HOTFIX.

Which of these do you need? Which can you have without the others? What do they do? Are there any problems that are currently known to using them?


#2. Non Multi Threaded Apps
I know that if you run a program at 100% with a dual core CPU it is actually using 50% CPU usage because the two cores read as one or something; unless the app is multithreaded. So is their anyway to make non-multithreaded apps run at FULL 100% on each core? For example, things like dual core CPU's are supposed to speed up things like Fraps recording and movie rendering, but if its only using the same amount of CPU power as a single core CPU, then its not actually helping at all.

#3. Affinity
I know how affinity works etc... but how do you set it permenantly?
I know these methods:
IMAGECFG.exe
other self-made third party programs that do it.
but is their anyway without a third party program that you can set affinity?

example: fraps always runs on CPU1 (if you have two cores), how do they do this?
or, prime95 can set its own affinity...how?

#4. RAM and stability issues.
Ive heard (this has happened to me and a few other people I know) that when you use the dual core CPU you have to REALLY REALLY slack your ram timings.

I could run my high performance ram at ddr400 2-3-3-6 on my single core 3200+, but not it wont run stabily past ddr400 3-3-3-7 with my X2 4200+.

I also heard that this MIGHT be related to the dual core driver/optimizer, or it may just be the CPU itsself. Or its always possible that my RAM just sucks, and the 4200+ shows it. thats why im looking for answers.


#5. Heat
What is a reasonable heat?

#6. Drivers (CPU etc)
What are the best nvidia/ati drivers to use with a dual core CPU.
what about sound card drivers?

if there is another thread like this, link me to it. Thanks!
10 answers Last reply
More about ultimate dual core thread
  1. Ambitious title my friend. In regards to question #5, asking for what is reasonable heat, I found this informative graphs at Hardwarezone.com.


    My x6800 has an average tempreture of 36C. When at idle it typically drops to 28C with the ambient tempretures at a normal 65 to 70C. At full load it peaks at 54.7C.
    Do you also want the overclocked temps or is this good enough for you?
  2. no thats fine. thanks for the info. answers and stuff to the other questions, or more to #5 will be gladly appriciated. :)
  3. I think it would be better if I left the rest of it to some one more experienced than I am, but for question #6, I recommend using the Driver CD that comes with the motherboard, for sound, if you have a sound card, use the driver CD that comes with it. The same goes for for any other hardware you want to install.
    When buying your motherboard, my best advice would be to go to the companies website and look for the latest BIOS and support for your board.
  4. bump :)
  5. Quote:
    #1. Optimizer, Driver, MS HOTFIX.

    Which of these do you need? Which can you have without the others? What do they do? Are there any problems that are currently known to using them?

    You need the Optimizer only on AMD systems, and only if you are having a problem.
    The driver (which is on the same page) is only needed if you have a 64-bit OS.


    Quote:
    #2. Non Multi Threaded Apps
    I know that if you run a program at 100% with a dual core CPU it is actually using 50% CPU usage because the two cores read as one or something; unless the app is multithreaded. So is their anyway to make non-multithreaded apps run at FULL 100% on each core? For example, things like dual core CPU's are supposed to speed up things like Fraps recording and movie rendering, but if its only using the same amount of CPU power as a single core CPU, then its not actually helping at all.

    A single thread is only going to run on one core. It is up to the software to spawn additional threads. If your using a single-threaded program, dualcore is still useful as the other core gives Windows some breathing room to run the background tasks.


    Quote:
    #3. Affinity
    I know how affinity works etc... but how do you set it permenantly?
    I know these methods:
    IMAGECFG.exe
    other self-made third party programs that do it.
    but is their anyway without a third party program that you can set affinity?

    example: fraps always runs on CPU1 (if you have two cores), how do they do this?
    or, prime95 can set its own affinity...how?

    http://www.xtremepccentral.com/forums/archive/index.php/t-1191.html


    Quote:
    #4. RAM and stability issues.
    Ive heard (this has happened to me and a few other people I know) that when you use the dual core CPU you have to REALLY REALLY slack your ram timings.

    I could run my high performance ram at ddr400 2-3-3-6 on my single core 3200+, but not it wont run stabily past ddr400 3-3-3-7 with my X2 4200+.

    I also heard that this MIGHT be related to the dual core driver/optimizer, or it may just be the CPU itsself. Or its always possible that my RAM just sucks, and the 4200+ shows it. thats why im looking for answers.

    Not sure on this one, I don't have a dualcore AMD. If you don't get a response here, try asking this in the memory forum.


    Quote:
    #5. Heat
    What is a reasonable heat?

    DaSickNinja has this one nicely covered.

    Quote:
    #6. Drivers (CPU etc)
    What are the best nvidia/ati drivers to use with a dual core CPU.
    what about sound card drivers?!

    For sound and chipset: like DaSickNinja says, use the driver CD, then go to the manufacturers website and check for updates.
    For graphics: I prefer to just download the latest ones from the web.

    I install from CD the sound drivers, since many of the updated drivers require the original to be installed. Graphic drivers are the full versions when you download them & they usually want you to uninstall the old drivers anyways.

    As far as being dualcore graphic/sound drivers - they are the same as single core.
  6. sweet thanks :)

    as for the driver and optimizer.... i have never heard about the 64-bit driver thing, and it doesnt say it on the AMD website. how did you find this information? (im not doubting you, im just wondering how come they dont provide that info to the user and just have people download it anyways).

    also: if you have the driver on a 32bit computer, does it negativily affect performance?
  7. Quote:
    ...
    #4. RAM and stability issues.
    ...

    I could run my high performance ram at ddr400 2-3-3-6 on my single core 3200+, but not it wont run stabily past ddr400 3-3-3-7 with my X2 4200+.
    ...

    1) How do you know the RAM was fully stable at 2336? Did you run e.g. memtest86+ and PRIME95 in stress-test mode?
    2) The Athlon 64 has built-in memory controllers, so when you swap CPUs, you are also swapping the memory controllers (unlike with Intel systems). Memory performance is a function of the DIMM, the MB, and the memory controller, so when you swap one of the components, it's not unusual to see performance differences. If you could provide more info about your RAM (brand and model number) and system conditions (any OCing?), we might have some suggestions about improving performance.
  8. Quote:
    sweet thanks :)

    as for the driver and optimizer.... i have never heard about the 64-bit driver thing, and it doesnt say it on the AMD website. how did you find this information? (im not doubting you, im just wondering how come they dont provide that info to the user and just have people download it anyways).

    I just find information like this when I'm searching the net to find a solution to someone's problem - or you read about these problems in other threads along with other member's posts on how to solve these issues. It would be a good idea to bookmark that link, and check now and then to see if AMD updates any of these utilities.

    Quote:
    also: if you have the driver on a 32bit computer, does it negativily affect performance?

    I would imagine that the driver won't install on a 32-bit OS, or if it does, the 32-bit won't use it.


    I did find this link you may be interested in. I've always heard that you either install the optimizer or the hotfix - this link show how to do both:
    http://www.xtremesystems.org/forums/showthread.php?t=81429
  9. Quote:

    #3. Affinity
    I know how affinity works etc... but how do you set it permenantly?
    I know these methods:
    IMAGECFG.exe
    other self-made third party programs that do it.
    but is their anyway without a third party program that you can set affinity?

    example: fraps always runs on CPU1 (if you have two cores), how do they do this?
    or, prime95 can set its own affinity...how?


    Unless a program was written to use a certain affinity (like prime95), the OS task scheduler will choose a CPU to use. If you write your own programs and have access to the windows SDK, you can specify the affinity.

    Quote:

    #4. RAM and stability issues.
    Ive heard (this has happened to me and a few other people I know) that when you use the dual core CPU you have to REALLY REALLY slack your ram timings.

    I could run my high performance ram at ddr400 2-3-3-6 on my single core 3200+, but not it wont run stabily past ddr400 3-3-3-7 with my X2 4200+.



    Sounds like a ram issue. On the rig listed in my sig, I'm running 2-3-2-5, 1T @ DDR440 (220 HT).
  10. along with those general questions and issues posted, Im also having another one.

    I dont know what the culprit it. but it seems my CPU usage has been very high lately while idle. the only process using CPU power would be "system idle process" but my cpu usage will be anywhere from 20-55%.

    when I look at my CPU usage history graphs, the second core "cpu1" is going crazy, while cpu0 (the first core) is staying very low. my cpu usage used to be 0-2%, and now the second core is going crazy and rasiing it. any ideas?

    i have noticed that the only way to make this crazy usage go away, is the launch Folding @ Home. once I launch folding at home, everything goes back to normal..... when I uninstall F@h this problem still occurs so I have no clue. I uninstalled F@H, and right as i uninstalled it....my cpu usage thing happened again. since I uninstalled it, i decided to try running another app, so I started up FEAR. once i closed FEAR, my cpu usage was normal.
    then, 5 minutes later it was going crazy again.
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