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X86 History

In the beginning there was 8080

Here is the history of the x86 and links to documentation of specific version. Not sure about most of it really.

1st - 1978 - 8086


2nd - 1982 - 286
MMU and Protected mode.



3rd - 1985 - 386
32-bit instruction set and virtual mode.



4th - 1989 - 486
Integrated x87 FPU, pipelined processor and on-chip cache.



5th - 1993 - Pentium
Faster FPU and MMX.



6th - 1995 - Pentium Pro
SSE

6th Generation CPU Comparisons

7th - 2000 - Pentium 4 - 1.3 Ghz

7th Generation CPU Comparisons




8th - 2003 -
x86-64, multi-core and SSE4.



9th - 2008 -
SSE5/AVX


10th - 2015 - 


Reference
Generations of the computer processors - 2008
PC Processors Guide



=== CPU Evolution
    Fetch -> Decode -> Execute
        Multi-cycle operation
            Phase 1: Load instruction
            Phase 2: Decode instruction / read register
            Phase 3: Execute operation
            Phase 4: Write back results
    Pipelining (Fetch - Decode - Execute)
        Allow mutiple instruction in flight at once
            Instruction 1: Writes back
            Instruction 2: Execute
            Instruction 3: decode
            Instruction 4: fetch
        Problems: Branch delay and memory latency
    Caches
        Add large cache to lower memory latency
            Slower then register
            A cache miss takes time.
    Branch Prediction       
        System that guess what memory is needed next.
        Reads it into cache memory before needed
        If guess wrong then useless work is performed.
    Out-of-order Execution
        Guess what code will run next and run it.
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