64 bit magic

Leading Linux developers have announced support for AMD’s 64-bit computing strategy at the recent LinuxWorld Conference & Expo in San Jose, CA.

Leading Linux developers have announced support for AMD’s 64-bit computing strategy at the recent LinuxWorld Conference & Expo in San Jose, CA.

AMD has earlier publicly released its 64-bit architecture specification, the x86-64 Architecture Programmers Overview, to enable the industry to begin incorporating x86-64 technology support into their operating systems, applications, drivers, and development tools.

In addition, AMD is announcing its x86-64 technology simulator - an application that is designed to give BIOS vendors, tools developers, operating system manufacturers and application providers the ability to test their software code for the x86-64 architecture prior to the release of AMD’s forthcoming 64-bit processors that utilize x86-64 technology. These processors, codenamed “Hammer”, are planned to be announced at the end of 2001. The x86-64 technology simulator is planned to become available free of charge at www.x86-64.org in September 2000.

Additionally, AMD is announcing the x86-64 technology web site, which went live 6 of September. Launched by AMD and industry partners, the purpose of the site is to help developers incorporate x86-64 technology support in operating systems, applications, drivers, and development tools while also being the home of x86-64 technology-related information including the x86-64 Architecture Programmers Overview and upcoming white paper and simulator.

"AMD engaged the developer community at large to solicit feedback on its specification, and we are now committed to providing developers the support tools for creating x86-64 code that is designed to move the industry toward 64-bit computing," said Fred Weber, vice president of engineering for the computation products group, AMD.

Linux developers' support for the x86-64 technology has been unanimous.

"We are excited to be working with AMD to provide AMD's "Hammer" family of processors to the Linux community," said Paul McNamara, VP of Products and Platforms, Red Hat Inc. "As leaders in the Linux space, our expertise will help AMD provide a solid foundation for this technology."

"Because x86-64 is an extension of an existing architecture, it is planned to be much easier to bring up the OS, get good compiler optimization, and support existing applications," said Mark Mitchell, president and chief technical officer, CodeSourcery and current release manager for GCC 3.0. "I'm thrilled to see AMD taking such a proactive attitude towards GNU/Linux. It's fantastic to have a hardware company working closely with the Free Software and Open Source communities in this way.