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[ The PC Guide | Systems and Components Reference Guide | The Processor | Processor Architecture and Operation | Internal Processor Interfaces and Operation ]

Performance Enhancing Architectural Features

Advertising for modern processors often includes a barrage of buzzwords. Manufacturers like to dazzle the prospective buyer with talk about the internal features of their CPUs, using technical jargon that makes the processors sound very advanced. In some cases, they are, and in others they are not. This section describes some of these performance enhancing features, what they mean and what they do.

It is important to remember that all of the architectural features of a processor matter very little taken by themselves. They are a means to an end, namely better performance. For most users, what really matters is how the design of the processor translates to faster execution, much the way most car drivers don't know what the displacement of their engine is, or the intricacies of fuel injection. Still, those who want to know how the processor works "under the hood", will find the descriptions of these features useful.

Next: Superscalar Architecture

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