Bottlenecks

Nailed Down

Junior Member
Dec 25, 2009
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With the development of each individual part of computers occurring in fits and starts, there always seem to be a bottleneck here or there. As one part gets faster, the other parts lag for a bit until other parts catch up or exceed the others. Storage I/O always seems to lag, but it has seemed to have made some leaps in recent years.

My question is, "In a modern PC, where is the big bottleneck right now and where is the next bottleneck going to be? What part is faster right now than it needs to be?"

Thanks for looking!
 

kranky

Elite Member
Oct 9, 1999
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"Bottleneck" is certainly a relative term because PCs are just pretty darn fast across all hardware today. But if you had to point to something, I think it would still be hard drives (non-SSD).
 

MisterDonut

Senior member
Dec 8, 2009
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+1 to above, SSDs and non-SSDs show a fatty difference. I wouldn't say any part right now is faster than it needs to be because somebody will always find a way to use it to its full potential.
 

MrPickins

Diamond Member
May 24, 2003
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The entire memory subsystem is usually the biggest bottleneck in any system.

Even with ILP and SMT, the cpu can end up idling while pages are fetched from ram or, even worse, from disk.

Of course, ram has gotten much faster over the years, while HDD speeds haven't enjoyed nearly the same growth (due to physical limitations). This is why SSD's are so nice. They have the ability to scale in speed much faster.
 

Nailed Down

Junior Member
Dec 25, 2009
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Thanks to all who answered. I've been pondering this for a while and now I have a new perspective with which to look at things.

Is there anything in the development pipeline to succeed the DDRx type of memory to speed that section up? Does it promise to speed things up to any significant degree in the next 3 years.

I realize SSDs have only made it to a very small fraction of PCs to date, but in the same vein, is there anything in the technology pipeline to supersede and replace SSDs down the road?

Thanks!