Intel working on new Meteor Lake L4 cache for faster next-gen Windows, Linux, Chrome booting

An image showing one of Intels 13th gen processors

Intel's Meteor Lake processors, which are the 14th Gen Core CPUs, are expected to arrive by the end of the year, or early next year. A rumor had suggested that Intel and Microsoft were aligning the launch of desktop Meteor Lake-S (MTL-S) CPUs right around Windows 12. However, there hasn't been much evidence of MTL-S at all in terms of leaks, which means we likely aren't getting next gen Windows at least until the middle of next year.

So although it means we are still a year away, Intel's new patent has revealed details of a new Level 4 (L4) cache dubbed "Adamantine" or "ADM" (via Phoronix), which is being designed to achieve "Slimmer And Faster Boot". Intel says they are seeing 300-350ms of additional reduction in boot times on ChromeOS, though there is no stat related to Windows 11 or Windows 12 at the moment. This explains the "Faster" bit. As for the "Slimmer" bit, the use of L4 cache as SRAM is also enabling Intel to design the firmware with a lighter footprint.

Here are some of the points the patent notes regarding faster booting:

[0088] Embodiments use design requirements described in FIGS. 3 and 4, which make larger and faster memory available at reset and modify firmware flows to use that pre-initialized memory rather define FSP flow to ensure secure SoC boot without being dependent over DRAM resources.

[0089] Additionally, embodiments make use of a multi-threaded environment at the pre-boot stage to achieve faster system boot where security enforcement can be run over parallel threads along with another independent IO initialization.

[0137] Improve significant boot performance--Able to reduce additional .about.300-350 ms of booting time on latest CHROME platform.

[0138] Help to design lightweight firmware using an L4 cache as SRAM, which conducts minimum and only key functional blocks with FSP (e.g., SoC Silicon initialization blob) and bootloader methodology to boot to OS.

The patent is available on the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) website (via VideoCardz). If you recall, Intel had done a similar thing with its 5th Gen Broadwell which packed 128MB of eDRAM. However, Broadwell utilized it for graphics (GT) while the new Adamantine (L4) cache is made for processors.

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