Semiconductor firm Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) showcased its upcoming server class processor featuring four processor cores on a single chip at the annual AMD Industry Analyst Forum.

The new Quad-Core Opteron branded processors increase computing power by supporting four processing units in one package. The new chip, expected to be released the second quarter of 2007, will be targeted towards large scale data-centers and workstations.

IT managers require platforms that can help them run their mission-critical business applications reliably and with less infrastructure, power and space, said Vernon Turner, a vice president at research firm IDC.

Upgradeability from dual- to quad-core processors is expected to be as straightforward as it was from single-to dual-core with AMD, with unchanged thermal and electrical envelopes, the company stated.

AMD quad-core technology was demonstrated on a reference server platform running 64-bit Windows Server 2003.

Shares of AMD fell by 35 cents to $21.21 in morning trading on the New York Stock Exchange.