Accelerated Graphics Port

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The Accelerated Graphics Port (AGP) is a standard outlining a high-speed, dedicated port primarily to assist in the acceleration of 3D computer graphics.

AGP dynamically allocates the PC's normal RAM to store the screen image and to support texture mapping, z-buffering and alpha blending.

Intel has built AGP into a chipset for its Pentium II microprocessor. AGP cards are slightly longer than a PCI card.

AGP operates at 66 MHz, doubled to 133 MHz, compared with PCI's 33 Mhz. AGP allows for efficient use of frame buffer memory, thereby helping 2D graphics performance as well. In fact, many RAID systems for "headless" (that is, lacking an attached display) servers plug into the empty AGP slot to take advantage of its increased throughput vs. PCI.

AGP provides a coherent memory management design which allows scattered data in system memory to be read in rapid bursts. AGP reduces the overall cost of creating high-end graphics subsystems by using existing system memory.


This article (or an earlier version of it) contains material from FOLDOC, used with permission.