Processors
Processors (Intel® Core™, Intel® Xeon®, etc); processor utilities and programs (Intel® Processor Identification Utility, Intel® Extreme Tuning Utility, Intel® Easy Streaming Wizard, etc.)
Announcements
Welcome to the Intel Community. If you get an answer you like, please mark it as an Accepted Solution to help others. Thank you!
11673 Discussions

Two questions about vPro

Grunthos
Beginner
484 Views

Any help appreciated!

1. Does a vPro CPU work on a non vPro (Q*) motherboard, and under what limitations?

2. If the answer to (1) is "yes", then will VMCS be available when that motherboard is used?

I'm actually hoping for a definitive answer from someone familiar with the way the features (inter-)operate or who has tried it...

0 Kudos
1 Solution
Sebastian_M_Intel
Moderator
415 Views

Hello Grunthos,  

 

Thank you for waiting. 

 

Please review the answer to your questions below: 

 

1. Does a vPro CPU work on a non-vPro (Q*) motherboard, and under what limitations?  

Yes, a vPro processor can work on a non-vPro motherboard. There will be limitations in terms of features around remote manageability of devices that are out of band (e.g. Intel AMT) and some of the built-in security features for protection below the operating system (e.g, Intel Hardware Shield). 

  

2. If the answer to (1) is "yes", then will VMCS be available when that motherboard is used?"  

Yes for the most part. VMCS should be available as this is a feature that is part of Intel-VT architecture. The caveat here is both the processor and the motherboard's BIOS must support Intel Virtualization Technology (Intel VT-x), which is not exclusive to vPro chipsets like 'Q'. 

You should check in ark.intel.com if a Chipset supports Intel Virtualization Technology and corroborate with the motherboard manufacturer since they decide if the support is included in the end-product or not. 

 

To further clarify terms used here: 

VMCS (Virtual Machine Control Structure): Is a high-speed data structure designed to hold guest and host CPU register states. The VMCS is enhanced and optimized with each successive implementation of Intel VT-x and is key to reducing virtualization latencies.  

  

Intel VMCS Shadowing: A hardware capability available on PCs with processors (4th gen and newer) designed to improve performance for nested Virtual Machine Monitors (VMM). This requires the CPU and motherboard's BIOS to support Intel VT-x, Intel VT-d, and Intel TXT. 

 

Regards,  

  

Sebastian M   

Intel Customer Support Technician  


View solution in original post

10 Replies
AlHill
Super User
482 Views

You will do better by asking your questions here:

https://community.intel.com/t5/Intel-vPro-Platform/bd-p/vpro-platform

Sorry, I cannot move your post there:

Doc (not an Intel employee or contractor)

Grunthos
Beginner
480 Views
n_scott_pearson
Super User Retired Employee
465 Views
Actually, I can answer this off the top of my head...
A vPro system is created by combining a vPro processor with a vPro (Q*) chipset. Any other combination yields a non-vPro system and all vPro capabilities are unavailable.
...S
Grunthos
Beginner
453 Views

Hi, thanks for the reply. I have moved the question here:

https://community.intel.com/t5/Intel-vPro-Platform/Two-questions-about-vPro/m-p/1235162#M8105

and I think my last response addresses your comment. It is not at all clear to me that VMCS is part of vPro.. It seems to be only available on vPro CPUs, but that it a different statement.

Sebastian_M_Intel
Moderator
426 Views

Hello Grunthos, 

 

Thank you for posting on the Intel® communities.   

 

Please let me review your inquiries internally, once we have an update; we will post it on this thread. 

 

Regards, 

 

Sebastian M  

Intel Customer Support Technician 


Grunthos
Beginner
422 Views

Thank you! A clarification would be greatly appreciated.

Sebastian_M_Intel
Moderator
416 Views

Hello Grunthos,  

 

Thank you for waiting. 

 

Please review the answer to your questions below: 

 

1. Does a vPro CPU work on a non-vPro (Q*) motherboard, and under what limitations?  

Yes, a vPro processor can work on a non-vPro motherboard. There will be limitations in terms of features around remote manageability of devices that are out of band (e.g. Intel AMT) and some of the built-in security features for protection below the operating system (e.g, Intel Hardware Shield). 

  

2. If the answer to (1) is "yes", then will VMCS be available when that motherboard is used?"  

Yes for the most part. VMCS should be available as this is a feature that is part of Intel-VT architecture. The caveat here is both the processor and the motherboard's BIOS must support Intel Virtualization Technology (Intel VT-x), which is not exclusive to vPro chipsets like 'Q'. 

You should check in ark.intel.com if a Chipset supports Intel Virtualization Technology and corroborate with the motherboard manufacturer since they decide if the support is included in the end-product or not. 

 

To further clarify terms used here: 

VMCS (Virtual Machine Control Structure): Is a high-speed data structure designed to hold guest and host CPU register states. The VMCS is enhanced and optimized with each successive implementation of Intel VT-x and is key to reducing virtualization latencies.  

  

Intel VMCS Shadowing: A hardware capability available on PCs with processors (4th gen and newer) designed to improve performance for nested Virtual Machine Monitors (VMM). This requires the CPU and motherboard's BIOS to support Intel VT-x, Intel VT-d, and Intel TXT. 

 

Regards,  

  

Sebastian M   

Intel Customer Support Technician  


View solution in original post

Grunthos
Beginner
398 Views

Thanks Sebatian M, that's a huge help and a great relief!

But it leads to one more question: I read elsewhere that VMCS shadowing is only available on vPro CPUs. Your answer does not explicitly confirm this: it suggests VMCS Shadowing requires "...the CPU and motherboard's BIOS to support Intel VT-x, Intel VT-d, and Intel TXT. "

Does this mean that I can get VMCS on non-vPro processors??? That would be even better news!

 

Grunthos
Beginner
396 Views

...I may have answered my question: processors with VT-d, VT-x and TXT are all vPro capable, so it seems the two statements are (currently) equivalent. Thanks again!

Sebastian_M_Intel
Moderator
374 Views

Hello Grunthos,  

 

Thank you for your update.

 

In that case, we will consider this inquiry as closed.

 

If you have any additional questions, please submit a new thread and we will gladly assist you. 

 

Regards,  

  

Sebastian M   

Intel Customer Support Technician 


Reply