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Thread: Ubuntu 11.04: i686 vs. i686 PAE vs. x86_64

  1. #11
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    Default

    I agree with fhuberts that an AMD CPU should have been included in the test too. At least in the old days, the performance difference between 32 bit and 64 bit was higher on AMD than on Intel.

    One more reason for Canonical to not promote 64 bit could be that 32 bit works better in memory constrained environments (e.g. a system with <512 MB RAM and integrated graphics).

  2. #12
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    Default multiarch

    Fedora has had multiarch since the 'beginning'.

  3. #13
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    Default schroot

    To me the only reason for sticking with 32-bit (apart from having very resource constrained, i.e. old system) would he drivers. If you have some device that has only 32-bit drivers available then you're stuck. No point of arguing "one shouldn't buy crappy hardware." Sometimes you just have to live with what you've got.

    At the application side, I think the problem is mostly solved. Sun's JRE has had a 64-but plugin since about one year (maybe more, I don't remember exactly). I hear IcedTea has it too. You can run 32-bit plugins in a 64-bit browser thanks to nspluginwrapper (or whatever the name was). The only 32-bit applications that I use are Skype and Adobe Acrobat Reader. The former comes in a deb package which takes care of lib32 dependencies. For the latter I use schroot.

    Root jails are very nice way to deal with 32-bit applications. You can have entire 32-bit distribution in a directory and install your 32-bit stuff there. I only bother to do this for Acrobat Reader because it has plenty of dependencies which I have to install by hand since it comes in tar.gz file. Then, if I happen to install a new host distribution from scratch, I just have to bring over the directory tree of the root jail, configure schroot for easy switch to the jail and voila - I have Acrobat Reader. I strongly recommend schroot for managing root jails - it works like a charm. Especially with debootstrap for debian-based distributions. You can set up a new one in no time.

    The use of 32-bit application under a 64-bit kernel does bring one issue which I would have liked to see addressed by the article. I wonder what is the performance impact of running 32-on-64 as opposed to 32-on-32. Such test can easily be performed on the original 64-bit setup - install a 32-bit version in a root jail and run the tests from there. So, Michael, if you're reading this, please do it. It will be hugely appreciated. Of course, I could do this myself for my own computer, but it will be more relevant to put it in the context of the original test.

  4. #14
    Join Date
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    France
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    IBM Corporation (2007-09-06). "IBM WebSphere Application Server 64-bit Performance Demystified". p. 14. Retrieved 2010-04-09. ""Figures 5, 6 and 7 also show the 32-bit version of WAS runs applications at full native hardware performance on the POWER and x86-64 platforms. Unlike some 64-bit processor architectures, the POWER and x86-64 hardware does not emulate 32-bit mode. Therefore applications that do not benefit from 64-bit features can run with full performance on the 32-bit version of WebSphere running on the above mentioned 64-bit platforms.

  5. #15
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    Oct 2007
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    Quote Originally Posted by whitecat View Post
    IBM Corporation (2007-09-06). "IBM WebSphere Application Server 64-bit Performance Demystified". p. 14. Retrieved 2010-04-09. ""Figures 5, 6 and 7 also show the 32-bit version of WAS runs applications at full native hardware performance on the POWER and x86-64 platforms. Unlike some 64-bit processor architectures, the POWER and x86-64 hardware does not emulate 32-bit mode. Therefore applications that do not benefit from 64-bit features can run with full performance on the 32-bit version of WebSphere running on the above mentioned 64-bit platforms.
    You can't compare POWER to x86, these are entirely different architectures.
    For one: x86 has _less_ CPU registers in 32 bits mode than in 64 bits mode while POWER has the same number of registers.

  6. #16
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by fhuberts View Post
    You can't compare POWER to x86, these are entirely different architectures.
    For one: x86 has _less_ CPU registers in 32 bits mode than in 64 bits mode while POWER has the same number of registers.
    This extract of text (retrieve form Wikipedia) is only here to say that x86-64 (and POWER) have native 32-bits mode, so there is no performance hit when 32-bits programs run on 64-bits system. That's all.

  7. #17
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Uqbar View Post
    Second, in a number of places you can read that a 64bit desktop PC is not that faster than a 32bit conterpart. If that's not a urban legend, it's at least a common belief none has cleared so far. So let's stay on the mainstream.
    Yup, but many of those articles are very outdated or benchmark 32-bit apps on a 64-bit OS.

    Fourth. People coming from the Microsoft world (that's not me) "know" that there "can be problems" in getting 64bit working drivers and software if they choose a 64bit OS.
    That may have been the case in 2005 when XP64 first came out. Many tried it when it first came out and many drivers were not readily available for it. A year later that changed and not being able to find a driver was an exception to the rule. Later when Vista came out that problem pretty much disappeared altogether.

  8. #18
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    Dec 2010
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    Default

    c'mon these charts can't be read. Slightly different shades of green sorted each time? Why can't the labels just show up inside the histograms themselves.

  9. #19
    Join Date
    May 2010
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    20

    Default Colorblind

    I'd like to add my complaint to the list. Those graphs are useless. I am red-green colorblind, so I frequently can't distinguish red from green, and I certainly can't tell green from green. Please use multiple contrasting colors for the graphs so I can tell which score goes with which test.

    Thanks.

  10. #20

    Default

    For those that don't like the colors, the color algorithm in pts_Graph and bilde_renderer can be improved. Patches welcome. Code at http://www.phoronix-test-suite.com/

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