We just started using our new CAD stationa a couple of weeks ago, and I'm noticing what appears to be a disturbing trend. These (I am told by IT) are Quad Core - 8 Thread systems.... I have no idea what that really means. I do know that as of IV 2013, IV is still only using one processor for most if not all functionality. But with each core split into two threads, does this mean IV is only using one thread?
Here is what I noticed besides slow performance. On our old machines, when we were really pushing the limits with some of our largest designs, i could look at Task Manager's "Performance" tab. It showed the 4 CPU's... and the one that was doing all of the work was, naturally, spiking toward the top. The top being 25% CPU usage. If we hit that magic 25% number.... usually that meant we were dead in the water. With these new systems, the same screen shows 8 CPUs, with one doing all of the work and spiking towrd the top... at 13% CPU usage. To me this means that we are going to crash a lot sooner than before.
Anyone here have any insights into these processors, and how they behave with Inventor? Here are the Specs:
Win 7 x64, Dell Precision T7600, Intel(R) Xeon(R) CPU E5firstname.lastname@example.orgGHz, 32 GB RAM; GeForce GTX580; 3DConnexion Wireless Space Mouse, Penguin Vertical Mouse
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Solved! by mrattray. See the answer in context.
I'm not an expert on CPU's by any means, but I think what you're seeing (13% now versus 25% previously) is the same indication of the same issue. Inventor is single-threaded for all intents and purposes, so it can only utilize 1 CPU at any given time. Since before 1 CPU was 1/4 of your CPU total capacity it was 25%, now it's 1/8 = 12.5% ~ 13%. So long as the new CPU's are faster in speed, you should see a performance increase. More directly to your question, I would not expect the lower % number is any indication you'll have more issues now. If your new CPU's are faster than the previous ones, that should be a net gain.
About the only time I see 100% usage on any core with Inventor is during rendering. Are you seeing it regularly?
So far today I have been seeing it all morning. I am updating to the latest service packs and updates etc... to see if that makes a difference.
And I might add that the assembly I am working on is by no means a large one... one of our smaller ones in fact. I should not be pushing a CPU to the max for any reason.... gotta be something going on here.
IV is slowly becoming more multi-core/thread aware. Idw rendering or FEA, for example. Some of the graphics system in IV 2014 is too.
However, lots of IV is still single-threaded. That means that IV must calculate each modeling feature or other program step one-after-another.
Your task manager is showing you that IV is running a complex single thread. Your processor has 4 two-thread cores for a total of 8 execution units, 100%/8 is 12.5%, round up to 13%.
As long as you are not hitting any other system bottlenecks, and the new processor has a faster single-thread performance than your older processor, you should spend less time waiting on IV and more time designing. Check http://www.cpubenchmark.net/singleThread.html for some benchmarks.
Yeah, there were no responses when I started typing...
Its not just processor clock speed, but also how clock ticks it takes to run a segment of code. If two cpus have the same clock speed, and the generation 1 cpu takes 100 ticks to run a segment of Inventor code and the generation 2 takes 75, it will take 25% less absolute time to run the task on the gen 2 processor.
Like was said upthread, you can confuse yourself with lots of details from online research.
IT has been looking at this as well, and also came up with the hyper threading question. We're going to look into that. Of course this whole thing could be very simply a case of Monday.
Thanks for the input guys!
There are lots of references to hyperthreading and hardware setups. Until recently I would have disagreed with anyone who suggested turning it off, but I have now seen first hand the effects, so I've reconsidered!
I wish there was more information about this from Autodesk. These are a couple of useful references on the subject;
And you'll find the link in the story doesn't work any more because Autodesk have changed all their tech-doc links... Grrr!
The new reference is here: http://knowledge.autodesk.com/support/inventor-pro
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