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Intel® I/O Acceleration Technology

Improve network application responsiveness with more efficient data movement and reduced system overhead. Today's multi-port Gigabit Ethernet (GbE) and 10 Gigabit Ethernet (10GbE) network adapters deliver enormous data flows that require advanced server I/O subsystems to avoid performance bottlenecks.

Intel® I/O Acceleration Technology (Intel® I/OAT), a component of Intel® Virtualization Technology for Connectivity, improves data flow across the platform to enhance system performance.

I/O acceleration for consolidated workloads

Server consolidation requires large numbers of virtual machines (VMs) per physical server. Intel I/OAT helps ensure that the resulting data traffic doesn't overwhelm server I/O.

  • Throughput: Improves CPU-network interface integration for better memory-copy performance
  • Scalability: Increases control over interrupt processing, including prioritization and resource allocation
  • Efficiency: Provides an alternative to interrupt and system-to-user memory copy operations for each packet

Together, these capabilities work in concert to address data-flow bottlenecks across the platform.


An integrated suite of performance features

Intel I/OAT is actually a set of technologies that each contributes to increased performance.

The features of Intel I/OAT enhance data acceleration across the computing platform.

  • Intel® QuickData Technology enables data copy by the chipset instead of the CPU, to move data more efficiently through the server and provide fast, scalable, and reliable throughput.
  • Direct Cache Access (DCA) allows a capable I/O device, such as a network controller, to place data directly into CPU cache, reducing cache misses and improving application response times.
  • Extended Message Signaled Interrupts (MSI-X) distributes I/O interrupts to multiple CPUs and cores, for higher efficiency, better CPU utilization, and higher application performance.
  • Receive Side Coalescing (RSC) aggregates packets from the same TCP/IP flow into one larger packet, reducing per-packet processing costs for faster TCP/IP processing.
  • Low latency interrupts tune interrupt interval times depending on the latency sensitivity of the data, using criteria such as port number or packet size, for higher processing efficiency.

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