The Tech Report discussed AMD's latest chipset roadmap which features some new things like the "Fiorano" server platform which is expected by mid-2009.
The SR5690 hub and SS7100 south bridge will bring goodies like 5.2GT/s HyperTransport 3.0 connectivity, second-generation PCI Express, PCIe hot-plug support, and an I/O Memory Management Unit (IOMMU). In AMD's words, the IOMMU will provide "superior virtualization performance through more direct CPU/peripheral interaction." An older AMD document (PDF) also says the IOMMU "protects memory from illegal access by I/O devices."
AMD will launch the RS5690 together with a MIMO-less SP5100, and both chipsets will compete with Broadcom and Nvidia offerings that power current Opteron systems. Fiorano might help put AMD on more equal footing with Intel, which has been rolling its own CPUs and chipsets into server platforms for years now.
The site also heard AMD's 45nm Shanghai will offer faster virtualization performance, AMD claims the new chip will switch 25 percent faster between virtual machines than Barcelona.