Although server CPU performance and network bandwidth has improved over the years, the primary method for moving data has remained unchanged.
Pat Gelsinger, Intel senior vice-president for the digital enterprise group, said, "The benefits to end-users will be better performance, particularly on applications such as web commerce or banking. Businesses will benefit from reduced cost of ownership and improved ability to grow their systems."
In modern computers the processor in a server shoulders the burden of processing, including constructing and deciphering protocol.
Supporting I/O protocols can be processor-intensive, which means the processor's operation is diverted and response time, reliability and the end-users' experience can suffer, Intel said.
Intel I/O Acceleration Technology aims to distribute the data-handling function between the processor, the chipset, network controller and software. This approach reduces the workload on the processor and accelerates the flow of data. The processor's job is reduced by giving the chipset and network controller responsibility for moving data in and out of memory. Intel said it will also optimise the TCP/IP protocol on Intel-based servers to cut the processor's workload in half and said its approach will achieve at least a 30% faster data exchange.
Microsoft said it will provide native support for Intel I/O in Windows Server releases, which will include technology that balances network TCP/IP traffic streams across multi-core CPUs.