Intel on Thursday launched an upgraded vPro to bring the technology's security and management features to Intel's latest Core i5 and Core i7 laptop and desktop processors.
Version 4.0 of vPro includes new instructions to quicken hardware-based encryption and decryption; keyboard, video, and mouse remote control; version 2.0 of Intel's anti-theft technology; and technology for analyzing and managing the performance of a remote PC.
The latest upgrade is built into Core i5 and Core i7 processors and associated chipsets targeted at business. The processors are based on Intel's latest 32-nanometer Nehalem architecture.
Intel says vPro v4 is aimed at small and medium-sized businesses, as well as large corporations. Many of the technology's features will be implemented in products from software companies and by managed service providers for easy adoption by SMBs.
Intel is hoping to entice companies still holding on to older PCs as a result of the economic recession with promises of a big performance boost with the use of the latest vPro/Core platform. The company claims that a new Core i5 vPro processor can run business productivity applications up to 80% faster, multiple applications up to twice as fast, and protect confidential data up to 3.5 times quicker than a three-year-old mainstream notebook.
The speed-up in encryption and decryption of the new platform is due in part to six new instructions added to the Advanced Encryption Standard implemented in the latest vPro. Also included is technology that enables IT staff to remotely manage PCs with encrypted hard drives.
The new vPro also includes version 2.0 of Intel's anti-theft technology, which makes it possible to lock down lost or stolen PCs. The upgrade makes it possible to reactivate recovered systems faster.
The keyboard-video-mouse remote control enables IT personnel to take over a remote PC, even when the operating system has crashed. KVM's remote control reboot lets IT staff use any boot image they like.
In addition, KVM remote control can use Aternity's Frontline Performance Intelligence platform to analyze and manage the performance of a remote PC, not just fix busted systems.
The vPro/Core platform, which Intel showcased last month at a San Francisco event, includes Intel's new Q57 Express chipset and the 82577LM Gigabit Network Connection for notebooks and 82578DM Network Connection for desktops.
Computer makers planning to release business PCs based on the new platform include Acer, Asus, Dell, Hewlett-Packard, Lenovo, and Toshiba.