As many of you may know already, the next big step for Intel is the Nehalem microarchitecture which is capable of supporting at least eight cores.
Word has just come to us that Intel plan to make the transition to eight-core Nehalem a bit smoother; a new type of server oriented processor codenamed Dunnington is in the works which will utilize three 45nm Core 2 Duo parts in the one die; thus being a 6-cored chip. It's been said that Dunnington will carry 3MB of L2 cache and a whopping 16MB of L3.
Intel will likely release these server-grade chips sometime during Q3 this year, bridging the gap between current-gen architecture and Nehalem.
Thanks to TechConnect for the heads up.
The Dunnington processors are said to be pin compatible with the Tigerton parts and have TDPs of up to 130W. Currently there's no info about the frequencies at which they will be but we won't have to wait too long to find out as the Dunningtons are slated for a release in the second half of the year, likely in Q3, ahead of the first Nehalem line-up.