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Russia building 'Baikal processor' to replace AMD and Intel chips

by Mark Tyson on 23 June 2014, 11:03

Tags: ARM (LON:ARM), AMD (NYSE:AMD), Intel (NASDAQ:INTC)

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The Russian government has decided to domestically produce a computer chip which for use in government offices and state-run firms. The move is meant to elbow processors from the likes of AMD and Intel out of government use due to concerns about US spying and processor back doors.

Electronics Weekly says Russian President Putin decided to push forward this processor development initiative. It follows a move, four years ago, when the Russian government said that all its computers would be moving to Linux.

The Russian processor is currently referred to as the 'Baikal' microprocessor, named after most voluminous freshwater lake in the world. The chip is being designed by T-Platforms, a Russian supercomputer maker, alongside state defence corporation Rostec with co-financing from Russian state-run technology firm Rosnano.

The Russian News Agency ITAR-TASS reports that there are going to be two initial Baikal chips; the Baikal M and the Baikal M/S. These chips will be designed upon the foundation provided by the ARM Cortex-A57 64-bit processor and be employed in personal computers and microservers.

The Russian government and state-run firms purchase about 700,000 PCs and 300,000 servers per year totalling $1.3 billion in spending. If most of the processors currently come from the likes of AMD and Intel then this will represent a big loss of business for the US tech giants. The Baikal microprocessor design work isn't set to start until sometime next year, so at least this is a decent amount of notice to the US chip makers.



HEXUS Forums :: 31 Comments

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The start of Coldwar 2.0?

At least Britain is doing well out of this, more ARM licenses!
you just got to love Russia... doesn't like the possibility of AMD/Intel chips being used to spy on them yet then goes and picks ARM which is 'designed' in Britain, who are probably one of the closest countries to the US when it comes to military action lol
Surely if they are that worried about backdoors they should get an architectural licence from ARM or go with MIPS. Taken an off the shelf design and fabbing it themselves is not as secure as making their own design able to implement the ARM or MIPS instruction set.

Anyway, I'd suspect the intent is swap NSA spying for the Russian equivalent...
This is more of a statement than anything else. If it was 100% about safety, it wouldn't be in the press.
LSG501
you just got to love Russia... doesn't like the possibility of AMD/Intel chips being used to spy on them yet then goes and picks ARM which is 'designed' in Britain, who are probably one of the closest countries to the US when it comes to military action lol


Well, the enormous difference is in the details:

With AMD/intel you have a very black box with the cpus.

With ARM license, you can have a 100% transparent specifications and design that you can validate for security.

All the europeans (and other) nations should do this for security reasons, as well as abandoning Windows platform (it's enough about backdoors and integrated spyware from America/Commonwealth nations).

The russians are the logical ones, the UE are the morons in these topics.