HyperTransport is a new bus technology for PC's which Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. (AMD) are, at the time of this writing, in the process of bringing to us (the end users). This bus provides far greater bandwidth than current aging PCI and AGP buses: AMD promises peak bandwidths at 6,4 Gbyte per second in each direction with a bus width of 64 bits (2x32), totalling a whopping 12,8 Gbyte / second transfer rate - enough to fill a high-end hard drive in less than 10 seconds, assuming the drive could write the data that fast.
By varying the bus width between 2 and 32 bits per direction, HyperTransport can be implemented for in all kinds of products - however, it's not designed to connect different peripherals the way FireWire, USB or Intel's InfiniBand is - it's more of an in-the-box connectivity solution. The HyperTransport bus operates at 200 MHz, with a type of DDR technology making the effective frequency 400 MHz - more than four times the current PCI bus, which operates at 66 Mhz with a maximum bandwidth of 266 Mbytes / second.
is in the process of rolling out its nForce chipset
which uses an 8-bit HyperTransport bus to connect the northbridge
and the southbridge
chips, dubbed the ICP
by nVidia. This bus provides 400 Mbytes / second transfer rate in each direction, which while being nowhere near the promised 6,4 Gbytes / sec that come with a 32-bit bus, is likely to give the nForce chipset impressive performance.
At the time of this writing, major motherboard makers like MSI and Asus are preparing to release boards based on the nForce chipset.
A deeper and vastly more detailed look at HyperTransport can be found on AMD's homepage. AMD itself is preparing to roll out its own products based on HyperTransport in early 2002, but says third-party corporations who are using HyperTransport technology (it's royalty-free]!) will probably have products out much sooner.
This text is an original by me (the node creator). I did not cut and paste it from anywhere - just so you know :)