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posted by Fnord666 on Monday February 05 2018, @03:16AM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the HiFive-Unleashed dept.

Submitted via IRC for TheMightyBuzzard

Slowly but surely, RISC-V, the Open Source architecture for everything from microcontrollers to server CPUs is making inroads in the community. Now SiFive, the major company behind putting RISC-V c...

That's damned nifty but at a grand for a 1.5GHz system, I don't see them selling that many to consumers.

Source: https://hackaday.com/2018/02/03/sifive-introduces-risc-v-linux-capable-multicore-processor/


Original Submission

Related Stories

SiFive to Debut a RISC-V PC for Developers in October 9 comments

SiFive to Debut RISC-V PC for Developers based on Freedom U740 next-gen SoC

In recent years, people have discussed the need to have Arm-based PCs or workstations for developers to work directly on the target hardware, and there are now several options including SynQuacer E-Series 24-Core Arm PC, Ampere eMAG 64bit Arm Workstation, and HoneyComb LX2K 16-core Arm Workstation.

Now it appears we'll soon get something similar for RISC-V architecture with SiFive to debut the first RISC-V PC for developers at the Linley Fall Processor Conference 2020 taking place on October 20-22 and October 27-29. The PC will be powered by Freedom U740 next-generation RISC-V processor that will also be introduced at the event.

We have very few details about this point in time, but the company points the SiFive Freedom U740 (FU740) SoC will enable professional developers to create RISC-V applications from bare-metal to Linux-based. The processor is said to combines[sic] a heterogeneous mix+match core complex with modern PC expansion capabilities, which probably means PCIe, SATA etc.., and the company will provide tools to ease professional software development.

Freedom U740 details are unknown, but Freedom U540 is a quad-core CPU that was used in the HiFive Unleashed single-board computer.

Related: SiFive Introduces RISC-V Linux-Capable Multicore Processor
SiFive HiFive Unleashed Not as Open as Previously Thought
SiFive Announces a RISC-V Core With an Out-of-Order Microarchitecture
GlobalFoundries and SiFive Partner on High Bandwidth Memory (HBM2E)


Original Submission

Qualcomm Invests in RISC-V Startup SiFive 4 comments

Qualcomm Invests in RISC-V Startup SiFive

Investors are zeroing in on the open standard RISC-V instruction set architecture and the processor intellectual property being developed by a batch of high-flying chip startups.

Last fall, Esperanto Technologies announced a $58 million funding round. The chip IP vendor is incorporating more than 1,000 RISC-V cores onto a single 7-nm chip. Data storage specialist Western Digital is an early investor in Esperanto, Mountain View, Calif.

This week, another RISC-V startup, SiFive, announced a $65.4 million funding round that included new investor Qualcomm Ventures. SiFive, San Mateo, Calif., has so far raised more than $125 million, and is seen as a challenger to chip IP leader Arm.

Observers note that wireless modem leader Qualcomm is among Arm's biggest customers, making its investment in SiFive intriguing. Also participating in the Series D round were existing investors Chengwei Capital of Shanghai along with Sutter Hill Ventures and Spark Capital. Intel Capital and Western Digital also were early investors.

Also at EE Times.

See also: SiFive Acquires USB 2.0 and 3.x IP Portfolio to Strengthen RISC-V SoCs

Previously: RISC-V Projects to Collaborate
SiFive and UltraSoC Partner to Accelerate RISC-V Development Through DesignShare
SiFive Introduces RISC-V Linux-Capable Multicore Processor
SiFive HiFive Unleashed Not as Open as Previously Thought
Linux Foundation and RISC-V Proponents Launch CHIPS Alliance

Separately, a handful of RISC-V proponents launched the CHIPS Alliance, a project of the Linux Foundation to develop a broad set of open-source IP blocks and tools for the instruction set architecture. Initial members include Esperanto, Google, SiFive, and Western Digital. CHIPS stands for Common Hardware for Interfaces, Processors, and Systems.

Esperanto Technologies and SiFive look like the names to watch.

Related: First Open Source RISC-V Implementations Become Available
Western Digital Unveils RISC-V Controller Design
Raspberry Pi Foundation Announces RISC-V Foundation Membership
Western Digital Publishes RISC-V "SweRV" Core Design Under Apache 2.0 License


Original Submission

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  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by Snotnose on Monday February 05 2018, @04:10AM (11 children)

    by Snotnose (1623) on Monday February 05 2018, @04:10AM (#633129)

    Is it RISC-Vee, or RISC Five?

    --
    The 3 symptoms of laziness: 1) think of something tomorrow 2)
    • (Score: 2) by c0lo on Monday February 05 2018, @04:19AM (1 child)

      by c0lo (156) Subscriber Badge on Monday February 05 2018, @04:19AM (#633131) Journal

      Is it RISC-Vee, or RISC Five?

      Wikipedia [wikipedia.org]:

      RISC-V (pronounced "risk-five") is an...

      Alternatively, you can try "risk-fi-vee".

      --
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoFiw2jMy-0
      • (Score: 2) by turgid on Monday February 05 2018, @09:11PM

        by turgid (4318) Subscriber Badge on Monday February 05 2018, @09:11PM (#633440) Journal

        Fyvie [google.co.uk]? Is there a Bonnie lass [wikipedia.org]?

        --
        Now I am become PHB, the destroyer of dreams.
    • (Score: 2) by c0lo on Monday February 05 2018, @04:24AM (8 children)

      by c0lo (156) Subscriber Badge on Monday February 05 2018, @04:24AM (#633132) Journal

      Is it RISC-Vee, or RISC Five?

      Another pronunciation valid for the present is: "Too damn'd expensive".
      Or the "I'm going to make a donation to keep them afloat, they do show a good promise" equivalent.

      --
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoFiw2jMy-0
      • (Score: 2) by Runaway1956 on Monday February 05 2018, @04:35AM (5 children)

        by Runaway1956 (2926) Subscriber Badge on Monday February 05 2018, @04:35AM (#633134) Homepage Journal

        I think that's the correct pronunciation: "Too damn'd expensive". I've been looking at options, and RISC-V has been one I've considered. I can't justify a thousand bucks for it though. My next build will almost certainly be AMD, just like the last ten or more.

        --
        "Trust the science" -- Tony Fauci and his army of psycophants
        • (Score: 2) by c0lo on Monday February 05 2018, @04:57AM (1 child)

          by c0lo (156) Subscriber Badge on Monday February 05 2018, @04:57AM (#633138) Journal

          I think that's the correct pronunciation: "Too damn'd expensive"...
          I can't justify a thousand bucks for it though.

          Well, that's not unexpected, I kinda suspect that "donation of thousand bucks" sound like foreign languages to you - Greek perhaps?

          (grin - nothing malicious intended/implied though, no value judgement attached)

          --
          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoFiw2jMy-0
        • (Score: -1) by fakefuck39 on Monday February 05 2018, @08:12AM (2 children)

          by fakefuck39 (6620) on Monday February 05 2018, @08:12AM (#633198)

          the same 10 idiots talking to each other, saying the same dumb shit over and over again. i was considering buying something to get me to work and back. I looked at the ford focus hybrid, but with it's battery it's too ridiculously expensive to drive to work. I'm going to go with a minibus, like my last 10 work vehicles.

          since you won't be able to figure it out on your own: i'm lafing at you retard. please do tell me about that use case you can use either a risk-v or and amd chip. i'll be glad to explain why one of those is a retarded choice for that use case.

          • (Score: 2) by Runaway1956 on Monday February 05 2018, @10:43AM (1 child)

            by Runaway1956 (2926) Subscriber Badge on Monday February 05 2018, @10:43AM (#633227) Homepage Journal

            Personal use home system. What "use case" is that, precisely? I've dismissed the Ryzen from my potentials, despite it's relatively low cost. You with all the knowledge might be able to tell all of us why I dismissed the Ryzen?

            --
            "Trust the science" -- Tony Fauci and his army of psycophants
            • (Score: -1) by fakefuck39 on Tuesday February 06 2018, @05:14AM

              by fakefuck39 (6620) on Tuesday February 06 2018, @05:14AM (#633641)

              "personal home system" - apparently even after the analogy and explanation you still don't understand. This is why I like reading your posts. it's very entertaining. so, for driving to work, you looked at a moped and a car, and you picked the car because the moped was overpriced for what it was. you didn't base your decision on milage or weather. let me ask you, when you get something to eat, what is your decision tree between an apple and a steak dinner? still don't get it? please let me know if you don't. I won't explain, but I will provide more examples. I get an orgasm picturing your confused face when you read them.

              I have no fucking idea what you're talking about after "personal home system" so I'm ignoring that as "something retarded a retard said - don't try to understand it"

              You know where I remember you from, a long time ago? When you were arguing that quartz was aluminum because the quartz molecule was aluminum. I asked you if you thought splenda was chlorine, and if a house was a brick. you didn't get it then either.

      • (Score: 2) by Snotnose on Monday February 05 2018, @07:20AM (1 child)

        by Snotnose (1623) on Monday February 05 2018, @07:20AM (#633184)

        Or the "I'm going to make a donation to keep them afloat, they do show a good promise" equivalent.

        I would also go that route, except I know my $1,000 contribution is a mosquito bite to RISC-V, but is a big hole in my annual spending.

        / $1,000 ain't nuthin
        // when you're spinning silicon
        /// it's one big thing, or lots of little things spread over a year, to folks like me

        --
        The 3 symptoms of laziness: 1) think of something tomorrow 2)
        • (Score: 2) by c0lo on Monday February 05 2018, @07:34AM

          by c0lo (156) Subscriber Badge on Monday February 05 2018, @07:34AM (#633190) Journal

          Note: I didn't intend any moral/value judgement on any of the alternative translations.
          Stop feeling guilty, guys!

          --
          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoFiw2jMy-0
  • (Score: 2) by takyon on Monday February 05 2018, @04:41AM

    by takyon (881) <takyonNO@SPAMsoylentnews.org> on Monday February 05 2018, @04:41AM (#633136) Journal

    8 GB DDR4 is about $100 [newegg.com] instead of the $30 it should be.

    If the rest of the board is worth $25, then this is only a $875 quad-core.

    --
    [SIG] 10/28/2017: Soylent Upgrade v14 [soylentnews.org]
  • (Score: 2) by linkdude64 on Monday February 05 2018, @05:27AM (1 child)

    by linkdude64 (5482) Subscriber Badge on Monday February 05 2018, @05:27AM (#633142)

    can it run Crysis?

    • (Score: 2) by c0lo on Monday February 05 2018, @05:47AM

      by c0lo (156) Subscriber Badge on Monday February 05 2018, @05:47AM (#633145) Journal

      can it run Crysis?

      Nope [board-db.org]:

      Co-processing units

      • GPU (graphics): ✘
      • MCU (real-time): ✘
      • FPGA (gates): ✘
      • NPU (neural): ✘
      --
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoFiw2jMy-0
  • (Score: 1, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 05 2018, @06:44AM (3 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 05 2018, @06:44AM (#633167)

    lethalpopcorn:

    Sifive are not releasing the designs anymore. So yeah, it may be riscV based but story of the instruction set aside, it’s no different than your regular ARM processor or your 80xx based micro.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 05 2018, @08:17AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 05 2018, @08:17AM (#633200)

      Let's say I have enough money to pay for such chips... and I would have a need for a significant amount of them... why would I pay for these chips and not roll my own (based on other open Risc-V designs)? I guess with increasing volumes you get (1) cheaper design development costs and (2) lower producing costs and (3) an open design.

    • (Score: 3, Interesting) by TheRaven on Monday February 05 2018, @11:53AM

      by TheRaven (270) on Monday February 05 2018, @11:53AM (#633242) Journal
      They've also crippled some of the existing ones. The Rocket core is the reference implementation and used to come with caches. A recent release removed them, which meant that lowRISC had to forward-port the old ones and is now maintaining an increasingly diverged fork of Rocket.
      --
      sudo mod me up
    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 07 2018, @07:51PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 07 2018, @07:51PM (#634523)

      while i don't like that news, i don't think it matters too much in the grand scheme of things, as these boards are just for people to work with the instruction set. these aren't meant as app dev boards or consumer hobbyist boards.

  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by Unixnut on Monday February 05 2018, @09:40AM (4 children)

    by Unixnut (5779) on Monday February 05 2018, @09:40AM (#633214)

    > That's damned nifty but at a grand for a 1.5GHz system, I don't see them selling that many to consumers.

    If I look at it as a direct comparison to AMD/Intel based on performance, then yeah, it seems a lot of money for what you are getting.

    For me however, the main reason to buy one of these is because it doesn't have a CPU built in rootkit like modern AMD and Intel do, that you can never be sure has been disabled and hasn't opened a backdoor to your entire system.

    So if you change the question to "Is 1 grand worth it for a system that is open architecture, and that isn't backdoored in silicon" I think you may find there is quite a larger market for it. I sure would consider it, perhaps not to replace all my machines, but maybe one or two for really sensitive stuff. Bonus points if it uses the good old simple BIOS rather than that horrible monstrosity that is UEFI.

    The only reason I am not doing so atm is because my hardware is old enough to not be heavily affected by the latest security violations (Not a single one of my machines even has UEFI yet). Hopefully in time their prices will drop, making it more affordable for everyday use.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 05 2018, @11:05AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 05 2018, @11:05AM (#633230)

      If that's your only concern, then you can probably save a good bit of dosh by going with one of AMD or Intel's pre-ME offerings, and get better performance to boot.

    • (Score: 2) by The Mighty Buzzard on Monday February 05 2018, @01:36PM (2 children)

      At this point, my phone's more powerful. This is well and truly a development board. There's no good enough reason to buy one at this price point except that you need to already be writing code for it so you're ready to release once something consumers can afford is released.

      --
      My rights don't end where your fear begins.
      • (Score: 3, Insightful) by Unixnut on Monday February 05 2018, @02:04PM (1 child)

        by Unixnut (5779) on Monday February 05 2018, @02:04PM (#633269)

        Yeah, but your phone is also riddled with binary blobs and god knows what else. I sure don't trust my phone with any sensitive information (if it were possible I wouldn't even keep my contact list on it, but if I go that far, I might as well not bother with a smartphone at all).

        Thing is, no open architecture systems are available now apart from this one. Even the raspberry pi has low level binary blobs to function. While I agree at this price point it could be considered a bit steep, I am hopeful with time prices will drop. Especially as one of the big HDD manufacturers plans to use the RISC-V chip in their disks.

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 05 2018, @09:59AM (4 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 05 2018, @09:59AM (#633220)

    It should be known since the days of the Intel Pentium that it is not the GHz that matters, but the operations per second. I have no idea how this system compares to a contemporary AMD/Intel chip, but I can imagine that the more direct (and thus simpler) RISC architecture allows to do more operations in parallel by utilizing the resources that other processors use for interpreting the instructions.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 05 2018, @11:07AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 05 2018, @11:07AM (#633231)

      Doubt that (better branch prediction, instruction reordering, etc.), besides all x86_64 architectures are RISC under the bonnet, anyway.

    • (Score: 2) by Wootery on Monday February 05 2018, @11:37AM

      by Wootery (2341) on Monday February 05 2018, @11:37AM (#633238)

      operations per second

      Too reductionist. It doesn't do to ignore caching and branch-prediction. Real-world performance is the only meaningful measure of real-world performance.

      the more direct (and thus simpler) RISC architecture allows to do more operations in parallel by utilizing the resources that other processors use for interpreting the instructions.

      Computer architectural matters aren't so easily reduced. I believe the major CPU architecture most similar to RISC-V is MIPS. MIPS does ok, and like ARM it reliably outperforms Intel on power-per-watt (at least it did last I checked), but RISC isn't a magic sauce. Design is hard, and ISA differences aren't everything.

    • (Score: 2) by The Mighty Buzzard on Monday February 05 2018, @01:45PM

      ...it is not only the GHz that matters...

      FTFY. Clock speed always matters. Even on a single task chip that's had every bit of the logic moved from software to hardware and optimized to its physically possible limits.

      --
      My rights don't end where your fear begins.
    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 05 2018, @06:38PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 05 2018, @06:38PM (#633374)

      In the days of the Intel Pentium, it was never the Ghz that mattered, because the notion of even talking about Ghz in the first place was years away.

      The Mhz, otoh...I had a 133 MHz machine, that thing was sweet. Use it to pivot around the ol' high school firewall and get on IRC in class.

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