AMD begins to enable GCC for Zen 5 architecture

During the fourth quarter of 2023’s earnings call, Dr. Lisa Su, CEO of AMD, confirmed plans to launch the next-generation Zen 5 architecture in the latter half of 2024, which will encompass the desktop platform Granite Ridge, the mobile platform Strix Point, and Turin for the server platform.

Phoronix reports that AMD has begun to incorporate support for the Zen 5 architecture into the GNU Compiler Collection (GCC), indicating steady progress in the project. At least five new instruction sets will be introduced, including AVX-VNNI, MOVDIRI, MOVDIR64B, AVX512VP2INTERSECT, and PREFETCHI. Of particular note is AVX-VNNI, first adopted by Intel in its 2021 Alder Lake, a vector neural network instruction becoming increasingly crucial in the growing field of artificial intelligence (AI) applications.

Ryzen 8000 series CPUs

Four of these instruction sets are already in use by Intel processors, with the remaining one soon to appear on Granite Rapids. In a sense, AMD is catching up with Intel, but this doesn’t reveal much, given the differing strategies of the two companies. AMD does not prioritize instruction set support as Intel does, especially concerning AVX-related instruction sets.

The GCC patch mentioned is not the first to add support for Zen 5 architecture processors. Since July last year, code related to the Zen 5 architecture has been emerging, with updates to Linux support, including new power management features. To date, AMD has disclosed little about the Zen 5 architecture, with more information likely to emerge at Computex 2024.