Symmetric MultiProcessing (SMP)

Chapter:Chapter 02 – Inside OS/2 Warp
Subsection: 01. Base Operating System Architecture
Document Number:08
Topic: Symmetric MultiProcessing (SMP)
Date Composed: 08-20-97 01:08:57 PM Date Modified: 11-15-98 06:14:13 PM

Warp Server SMP

Symmetric MultiProcessing is used to increase the processing capability of a single computer. By using multiple processors the amount of work which can be performed by a single computer can be increased considerably. Warp Server SMP supports SMP computers with from one to sixty four processors and provides a significant improvement in performance over computers with a single processor.

Warp Server SMP and Warp Server for e-business are both scaleable up to 64 processors in a single computer. Warp Server is optimized for 4 processors and Warp Server for e-business is optimized for 8 processors.

Under Warp Server SMP and Warp Server for e-business, Symetric MultiProcessing spreads all of the computing tasks among all of the processors in the computer as evenly as possible, so that each processor has some of the load.

Windows NT Comparison

Windows NT, in contrast to the way Warp Server SMP works, loads up each processor completely before placing any load on the additional processors which may be available. This causes some processors to do most of the work, while other processors may not do anything at all.

Windows NT is, theoretically, capable of scaling up to 16 processors, but in reality, it can only use a maximum of 4 processors effectively. Even then, based on independent third party tests, Warp Server on a single processor computer outperforms Windows NT on a 4 processor SMP environment.