Windows XP Professional x64 Edition RC1 tested

Windows XP Professional x64 Edition RC1 tested

Summary: Release Candidate 1 (RC1) of Windows XP Professional x64 Edition is now available: ZDNet has put Build 1289 through its paces.

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3D games performance

Broadly speaking, 64-bit Windows can run 32-bit games as fast as 32-bit Windows does. In terms of stability, there are even advantages in using the 64-bit version: Windows XP Professional x64 Edition did not crash at all during our tests, whereas the current XP version needed a reboot during the Unreal Tournament Albatross test.

However, this is possibly due to the different drivers for the GeForce card. Nvidia offers version 66.96 for 64-bit Windows, but 32-bit Windows is still officially at version 66.93 (although version 71 is circulating on the Internet). Obviously it would be preferable to use the same driver versions, in order to eliminate this factor from the comparison between 64-bit and 32-bit Windows.

3D performance

Operating system
XP 64 (66.96)
XP 32 (66.93)
XP 64 (66.96)
XP 32 (66.93)
XP 64 (66.96)
XP 32 (66.93)

Resolution 1024 1024 1280 1280 1600 1600

3DMark 2005 (score) 4585 4830 3792 3942 3195 3305
3DMark 2005 4xAA, 8xAF (score) 3740 3859 3030 3074 2263 2319
UT 2004 Albatross (fps) 71.0 72.7 70.7 72.4 70.5 72.2
UT 2004 Desert Isle (fps) 101.6 104.2 99.3 102.2 91.6 94.2
UT 2004 Albatross 4xAA, 8xAF (fps) 70.8 crashed 69.6 crashed 57.9 crashed
UT 2004 Desert Isle 4xAA, 8xAF (fps) 95.3 98.1 77.3 79.4 58.8 60.1
UT 2004 Albatross 4xAA, 8xAF HQ (fps) 65.1 65.5 51.4 51.7 38.6 39.3
UT 2004 Desert Isle 4xAA, 8xAF HQ (fps) 79.3 79.5 58.1 58.5 44.5 44.8
Doom 3 4xAA, 8xAF HQ (fps) 70.1 62.5 49.9 46.7 37.7 36.2
Doom 3 4xAA, 8xAF (fps) 75.1 75.2 53.3 53.5 39.6 40.1
Doom 3 (fps) 103.4 108.4 86.6 89.4 69.9 71.2


Topics: Operating Systems, Reviews, Software

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24 comments
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  • hardly 'set rolling by AMD and microsoft'. AMD, yes, microsoft, no. Linux and other *NIXs have supported 64 bit processors for a long time, certainly before microsoft even thought about it.
    anonymous
  • No mention of Apple.... typical.
    anonymous
  • The main benefit is 64 bit math, not 64 bit addressing! This is not even mentioned in the article. The x86-64 extensions add a bunch of 128 bit registers, and allow compilers to do either 64x64 bit arithmetic, or multiple 32x32 bit operations at once. This is very similar to SSE2, except that compilers will automatically generate optimized code, rather than requiring special SSE2 assembly to be written. There are also an increased number of registers which improves standard applications as well. The performance benefit between P4 in 32 bit mode and AMD64 in 32 and 64 bit modes can be shown here: http://www.thejemreport.com/mambo/content/view/74/42/
    With a 64 bit OS and compiler, scientific, rendering and encoding applications can see up to 8X performance improvement.
    Please make the true benefit of 64 bit apparent in your next review. It has nothing to do with memory addressing for the consumer, but rather for raw performance due to more and larger registers.
    anonymous
  • Mention of Apple? Why??? This is an overview of Windows XP Professional for the 64 bit extension of x86. I'm pretty certain that the latest articles on Jaguar/Panther don't mention AMD's x86-64 ... Seeing as how there's not a version of Windows for the G5, or a version of x86-64 compatible Panther why *should* there be crosstalk?

    An analogy: even though both teams play a game called "football", citing the stats of Manchester United would be pointless when doing commentary about the New England Patriots ...
    anonymous
  • Couldn't agree more about Microsoft being very slow at pushing support for 64-bit AMD64 technology. I bought Athlon 64 about a year ago and at that time the only OS that worked (and it worked quit well) was Linux. I thought that iby summer of 2004 they would get their act together, but no. Half of year is over and we are still waiting and in the meantime Linux support for AMD64 is realy realy good. You can hardly even find an application that couldn't get compiled in 64-bits.
    Because of all this slow development by Microsoft even our computational center at our university switched to Linux and 64-bit Mathematica, which gets quite nice speed boost over 32-bit version, it is about twice as fast.
    Oh and if you still don't know Java 5.0 (JRE and JDK) is available in 64-bit AMD64 systems, for both Linux and Windows.
    anonymous
  • The writer must have forgotten about the Intel Itanium processor. It is 64 bit as far as I know. The only difference is that it is generally available as a server platform instead of what the AMD product is aimed at.
    anonymous
  • 1. Microsoft has been working hard on x86-64 for some time. Remember, Microsoft has more drivers and hardware that they need to support before they put their stamp of approval on the software they sell than Linux (which sometimes answers that problem with "write your own drivers!")

    2. Apple is not mentioned because Apple is not relevant.

    3. The "64 bit math" arguement is wrong. AMD64 does not add any new 128 bit GPRs. It adds 16 new 64bit GPRs and 64 bit addressing. That's about it. But those are significant advances.

    4. Actually a *lot* of people have forgotten about the Itanum processor.
    anonymous
  • Microsoft is also forgetting about the 64bit Itanium, and ditching support for it. This XP64bit is optimized for AMD64, Intel lost the 64bit 1st round.
    anonymous
  • "The writer must have forgotten about the Intel Itanium processor."

    No, it is MS that has done so.
    http://www.microsoft.com/windowsxp/64bit/evaluation/upgrade.mspx
    Supported processors: AMD Athlon 64, AMD Opteron, Intel Xeon with Intel EM64T support, Intel Pentium 4 with Intel EM64T support.
    Important: Windows XP Professional x64 Edition cannot be successfully installed on 64-bit Intel Itanium
    anonymous
  • Anon. said "The main benefit is 64 bit math, not 64 bit addressing!" I disagree.

    Some of us need 64 bit addressing because 4GB RAM is simply not enough.
    anonymous
  • If you need more that 4GB of memory, then you shoudnt be running Win XP. Thats Server Country still.
    anonymous
  • How about wanting to edit a complete DVD in memory ? Surely thats not server country ?
    anonymous
  • 4GB of memory is not much in the 3D and Film development worlds.
    I find editing film for DV is now a burden on my 1GB, 2-3 is now required.
    anonymous
  • I'm afraid the review was a non-event, half the time stating the obvious in pseudo technical jargo, the rest of the time sitting on the fence, being ever so dry and deadpan. What I would give for people in computer journalism who a)can write and b)who have the balls to come right out and take a position...
    anonymous
  • Re. Mike Collins' comment: as far as 'sitting on the fence' is concerned, this is a preliminary report on a beta version, so it isn't appropriate to deliver a final verdict; as to the writing style, we should point out that this article was translated from German, so perhaps you'll allow us a little leeway there.
    anonymous
  • The Itanium is a completely different architecture to that of the Athlon 64 and Opteron, that is probably why it is not mentioned.
    anonymous
  • Quite right. Itanium has nothing to do with this review: Microsoft Windows XP Professional x64 Edition runs on x86 processors that have 64-bit extensions, such as AMD's Athlon and Opteron chips, and some of Intel's Xeon and P4 chips. Last week Microsoft announced that there would be no 64-bit Windows XP for the Itanium, which is increasingly being positioned as a very high-end server chip for technical computing, high-performance clustering and supercomputing applications. Not really what this review was about.
    You can read the story here if you're interested: http://news.zdnet.co.uk/hardware/chips/0,39020354,39183192,00.htm
    anonymous
  • So if you can get 2 times average performance and for compute intensive programs like games - 8 or more times performance (after all with 64 EM64-t you can gurantee SSE2) guess who will drive this market so that all desktops will be 64 bit within a year - gamers. Gamers drive the graphics processor market and that will drive the home desk top.

    All NEW AMD chips are inherently 64 bit.

    And do you really think that intel has it right - when you can buy an A530N HP workstation with an nforce3 chipset and Geforce graphics card today under $800 and I can assure you it screams with the 64 bit O/S. Thats nearly what an AM64-t intel chip will cost you that performsd as well as the AMD64 athlon.
    anonymous
  • Don't download this Beta! It is not what you think it is!!

    I tried to email this comment to the author of this article, but the email delivery failed:

    Greetings,

    Your recent ZDnet article titled
    anonymous
  • 1218 may be available for download to the lay user now
    but certain other members are able to obtain more recent builds
    anonymous