Intel offloads virus scanning to its GPUs, lowers CPU usage

Intel utilizes their integrated GPUs for virus scanning, with the offload improving both battery life and performance.

57 seconds read time

Intel has announced new plans that would see the integrated GPUs on their processors used to scan for malware and viruses, something that will improve both performance and battery life on some PCs.

Intel offloads virus scanning to its GPUs, lowers CPU usage |

Rick Echevarria, Intel's platform security division VP explains: "With Accelerated Memory Scanning, the scanning is handled by Intel's integrated graphics processor, enabling more scanning, while reducing the impact on performance and power consumption. Early benchmarking on Intel test systems show CPU utilization dropped from 20 percent to as little as 2 percent".

Intel's new Threat Detection Technology is available on Intel's 6th/7th/8th gen processors, where it will move virus scanning abilities to the GPU, offloading it from the CPU. Right now virus scanners use the CPU to detect memory-based attacks, but entire system performance drops because of this. The company is hoping that offloading virus scanning to the integrated GPU that performance and power consumption will improve, as most PCs aren't using on-board GPUs to their full potential at all times. Might as well make use of that unused GPU power.

Microsoft has teamed with Intel on the initiative at first, with changes coming to the Windows Defender Advanced Threat Protection (ATP) later this month. Intel on the othe hand is working with anti-virus companies so that they can take advantage of the silicon-level changes to virus scanning, so that their software offloads everything to the integrated GPU.

Anthony joined the TweakTown team in 2010 and has since reviewed 100s of graphics cards. Anthony is a long time PC enthusiast with a passion of hate for games built around consoles. FPS gaming since the pre-Quake days, where you were insulted if you used a mouse to aim, he has been addicted to gaming and hardware ever since. Working in IT retail for 10 years gave him great experience with custom-built PCs. His addiction to GPU tech is unwavering and has recently taken a keen interest in artificial intelligence (AI) hardware.

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