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More: SMP: Two Definitions?

Forum: User-space device drivers
Re: Question What is SMP?
Keywords: SMP
Date: Thu, 09 Jan 1997 03:18:21 GMT
From: Reinhold J. Gerharz <>

I thought SMP meant "symetric multi-processing," a technology where two or more processors share equal access to memory, device I/O, and interrupts. Ideally one would expect a 100 percent improvement in processing performance for each additional processor, but in reality only 80-90 percent is achieved.

However, I have discovered that to some people, SMP means "shared-memory multi-processing." This technology allows multiple processors to run user programs, but one processor reserves interrupt and I/O handling for itself. This is traditionally called "asymetric multi-processing," and I have tentatively concluded that only "marketing types" would use this terminology to confuse potential customers.


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