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Definition: Itanium


A CPU family from Intel introduced in 2001 that was designed to supersede x86-based servers. Although very advanced and even with HP as its major supporter, Itanium gained only a fraction of the market dominated by the x86 line. In addition, the compilers necessary to take full advantage of Itanium's elaborate architecture were never fully developed. In the meantime, Intel kept upgrading its x86 CPUs, first to 64 bits and then with advanced security and fault detection in its Xeon chips. See x86-64 and Xeon.

HP-UX (HP's Unix) and several other Unix versions run on Itanium; however, starting in the 2010 time frame, Itanium versions of Windows Server, Red Hat Linux and Ubuntu Linux were given end of life. Itanium was discontinued in 2021 with support until 2025.

Native, x86 and PA-RISC Apps
Itaniums run native applications and emulate x86 and HP PA-RISC apps. x86 programs are executed in hardware or in software (see IA-32 Execution Layer). HP PA-RISC apps are translated in software (see Aries). For more on the architecture, see IA-64.

 Model           Process  Max.
            Year   Tech.  Clock  Max.
 Code Name  Intro  (nm)   Speed  Cores

 Itanium
 Merced     2001   180  800 MHz   1

 Itanium 2
 McKinley   2002   180  1.0 GHz   1
 Madison    2003   130  1.6 GHz   1
 Deerfield  2003   130  1.0 GHz   1
 Hondo      2004   130  1.1 GHz   1
 Fanwood    2004   130  1.6 GHz   1
 Madison    2004   130  1.7 GHz   1

 Montecito  2006    90  1.6 GHz   2
 Montvale   2007    90  1.7 GHz   2
 Tukwila    2010    65  1.7 GHz   4
 Poulson    2013    32  2.5 GHz   8
 Kittson    2017    32  2.6 GHz   8