Tech Tip: Explanation of the Intel Xeon Naming Convention

Note: In April 2019, Intel revised its naming convention and rebranded its products as the Intel Xeon Scalable Processor Family. This article is regarding the Intel Xeon CPUs that came before the new convention.

How to Read Intel Xeon Non SP Naming Convention

Step 1. E Family

E3 Family

E3 Family Processors are Single Processing CPUs. They work in nodes that have a maximum of one CPUs. These central processing units work well in workstation environments.

E5 Family

E5 Family Processors are known as the performance CPUs. They are the high-end and can run on single, dual, and quad CPU systems.

E7 Family

E7 Family Processors are Ultra high-end. They run on quad and octo sockets and are meant for advanced applications.

Step 2. Decipher the Alphanumeric Code

Mutiprocessing (Wayness)

The first digit in the alphanumerical sequence denotes the maximum number of CPUs that can be in the system. It indicates what is the CPU’s capabilities when it comes to multiprocessing. Intel uses an ambiguous term ‘wayness’ without any definition or explanation.

  • 1: Single Processor, CPU is meant for a workstation.
  • 2: Up to 2 Processors
  • 4: Up to 4 Processors
  • 8: Up to 8 Processors

Socket Type

The second number in the alphanumerical sequence denotes what the socket type is for the processor. The following are the possibilities of the second number in the code and what they mean:

  • 2: Socket 1155, Socket 1150, or BGA
  • 4: Socket B or Socket B3
  • 5: BGA
  • 6: Socket R or Socket R3
  • 8: Socket 1567 or Socket R1

Processor SKU

The last two numbers in the numerical sequence denote which processor it really is. The higher the number the higher the tendency of the CPU having better specs or performance.


The suffix following the numerical sequence indicates any additional features that may be on the CPU.

  • L: Low power consumption
  • W: High power consumption (Workstation)

Step 3. V for Version

The V determines the microarchitecture of the CPU. V is commonly referred to as version and sometimes generation. The following are the version numbers and their corresponding microarchitectures.

List of Versions

  • V2: Sandy Bridge
  • V3: Haswell
  • V4: Broadwell
  • V5: Skylake
  • V6: Kaby Lake

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