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Hyperthreading on Dual Hex Core Xeons - On of Off?

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Hyperthreading on Dual Hex Core Xeons - On of Off?

Postby Temp » Wed Dec 19, 2018 4:14 pm

Hi Folks,

I've just got a refurbished HP Z600 system:

Dual hex core Xeon X5675 (12 cores in total)
Win 7 Ultimate 64 Bit
48 Gig RAM
SSD system drive - 240 GB
SATA secondary drive - 1 TB
Nvidia Quadro 600 (old, but adequate for now)

My question is whether I should enable hyperthreading in the BIOS (which would effectively give me a total of 24 threads). I've read many conflicting reports with no real conclusion. I'll be running the following:

Reaper 64 Bit (not installed yet, but it soon will be)
Photoshop 64 Bit
Firefox 64 Bit (with lots of tabs, JavaScript etc.)
A dab of Blender
A smidgeon of video editing using Sony Vegas Pro 11

I'll also be running lots of simultaneous tasks, including Python, regular Office tasks and so on. I'm sure the system will cope with most things that I throw at it, but it'd be good to have some real-world facts and figures (and I know there's a few hardcore tech-heads on here :wink:). I've also read a few reports that enabling HT will increase the overall temperatures and energy usage, so that's also a factor (the system has added ~6 pence per hour according to my power meter thingie).

Also, I'm intending to install Vbox/VMWare, so any advice on how HT might affect this would also be much appreciated.

Many thanks, and Merry Christmas folks!
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Re: Hyperthreading on Dual Hex Core Xeons - On of Off?

Postby Folderol » Wed Dec 19, 2018 4:24 pm

Ummm, why not just try it both ways and see which gives the best results?
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Re: Hyperthreading on Dual Hex Core Xeons - On of Off?

Postby Pete Kaine » Wed Dec 19, 2018 5:04 pm

Temp wrote:I've also read a few reports that enabling HT will increase the overall temperatures and energy usage, so that's also a factor (the system has added ~6 pence per hour according to my power meter thingie).

Well, yes, you're making the CPU work harder, so it'll use more power.
More out, requires more in. Really it's no different from pushing the car accelerator harder and it using more petrol.

Turn it off and you disable somewhere between 25% - 40% of the total available performance depending on the workload that would otherwise be available.

Xeon's aren't really known for their power efficiency, so saving a few more percent in the grand scale of things probably isn't all that much.
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Re: Hyperthreading on Dual Hex Core Xeons - On of Off?

Postby Temp » Thu Dec 20, 2018 12:40 am

Thanks guys.

Ummm, why not just try it both ways and see which gives the best results?

Yep, I fully intend to give it some welly and run some benchmarks. As I'm still setting up, there is no specific "it" to try at the moment. I'm a decade out of touch with computer hardware (and still lagging some way behind with this new system), so I was just wondering if anyone on here had the same CPUs, and whether there was any kind of best practice or quirks to be aware of, similar to the old advice to counter-intuitively select 'Background services' when tweaking processor scheduling (and whilst I'm here, is that still valid?).

Turn it off and you disable somewhere between 25% - 40% of the total available performance

Right, that's a fair bit. I'm generally a set-and-forget type, but I'll run some tests when it's loaded up. If my electricity monitor is accurate, the extra power equates to a couple of pints of Bushells per week (it'll be on 24/7), so it's quite a tough consumption-based decision to make!

Cheers
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