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Mandrake To Support AMD's Hammer 165

Posted by michael
from the hammer-time-joke-goes-here dept.
ruiner writes "Mandrake has announced their intention to support AMD's Hammer with a 64 bit version optimized for the new CPU. Redhat is also rumored to be following Suse's lead. 'This new generation of AMD Athlon and AMD Opteron processors is extremely exciting. A version of Mandrake Linux dedicated to these powerful 64-bit processors can certainly accelerate MandrakeSoft's growing adoption in the Linux corporate market' said Jacques Le Marois, CEO of MandrakeSoft."
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Mandrake To Support AMD's Hammer

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  • Or, no - That's Athlon 2. Or no.. Infinium 36..

    I am confused..

    What will be the Intel spin on 64-bit is better then 32? He he..

  • dept. (Score:4, Funny)

    by El Pollo Loco (562236) on Saturday June 29, 2002 @02:56PM (#3792651)
    from the hammer-time-joke-goes-here dept.

    Followed by a press release from AMD and mandrake saying "can't touch this!"

    • Re:dept. (Score:3, Funny)

      by bilbobuggins (535860)
      Followed by a press release from AMD and mandrake saying "can't touch this!"

      you're talking about when you run an athlon without a fan right?

      • by Sj0 (472011)
        Everybody should just grow up. Do you really expect a 1.6 GHZ processor to run as cool as a 486? Perhaps you have slightly unrealistic expectations of an excessively powerful, bleeding edge chip?

        Next thing I'm bound to hear from the same vein: "ha ha ha! My twin cylinder dirtbike engine runs cooler and uses less gas than that V12 supercharged DOHC motor! the V12 sux0rz!"

        regardless of whether you were being humorous, I've seen it too many times, and decided to say something about it.
    • from the hammer-time-joke-goes-here dept.
      Followed by a press release from AMD and mandrake saying "can't touch this!"
      "The password's hammer time."

      "The Simpsons already did that."

    • Despite the humor factor of MC Hammer, I think a real suggestion for a theme song would be the Breeder's "Divine Hammer". It would also work well since they just released their new album Title TK. Although, I admit I haven't heard it yet.
  • Right, this is definitely offtopic, but why is MandrakeForum *never* the first to reveal this kind of thing? I switched to Debian for different reasons, but it has always amazed me that the community site for Mdk users is seemingly the last to have this information.

    Given that Mdk is an avowedly newbie-oriented distro, one would think that the company would have a clear interest in getting this out to its 'channels', to the party faithful, *first*.

    • "June 27th, 2002 - MandrakeSoft cooperates with AMD to support x86-64 architecture - Mandrake Linux 9.x for the upcoming 64-bit AMD Athlon and AMD Opteron processors is expected to be commercially available by the beginning of 2003."

      This news are published on the main www.mandrake.com page????? You don't even have to log into channels. Also there was a rumor long time ago. But news are officialy published after signing cooperation. News != Rumors.

      I hope your reasons to switch to Debian were better than this bashing.
      I don't really use MDK, except on my notebook.
    • How many users there are business/IT managers?
  • by wowbagger (69688) on Saturday June 29, 2002 @02:56PM (#3792655) Homepage Journal
    I'm not knocking Hammer, but why does everyone act like the Itanium and Hammer versions of Linux are the first 64 bit versions? I was running 64 bit Linux several years ago on my Multia!

    Once you have GCC that will compile for the target arch, and you have the needed changes to Linux to support that arch, why is it more than bunch of builds to get a 64 bit version? Many (perhaps even most) apps are now 64 bit clean (unlike certain other criminal OS's).

    Why does everyone ignore the MIPS and Alpha versions?

    (and OT: When will a MIPS version of Linux with full support for the extra hardware in an Indy come out?)
    • I don't think that the issue is "The first 64 bit Linux distro". We all know that there have already are 64 bit Linux distro's, and that they are great. The issue is that companies who have a major investmen in x86 will now have a linux option (without having to compile everything themselves).
    • I think the simple answer to this question is that no one cares about MIPS or the Alpha. Both platforms are now dead. They died because they were too expensive, and didn't provide sufficient performance increases over current 32-bit processors. Hell, as far as I understand it, Only IBM latest PowerPC processor outperforms the fastest Pentium 4's and Athlon processors.

      Now, 64-bit processors will be affordable for everyone but the super rich, and they will natively run all the programs used by 98% of computer users. Thats sweet.

      I mean, talking about the Alpha? Who the hell uses that. That has been dead for years!! It was dead as soon as Compaq bought DEC. MIPS?? Hmm, outside of my Casio PDA and my Nintendo 64, I don't think I have ever even seen a MIPS machine. If you had said you were running an RS/6000 in your crib I would feel a little sympathy. Of course, AIX doesn't cut it for you.
      • I mean, talking about the Alpha? Who the hell uses that. That has been dead for years!!

        How about the third and fourth fastest supercomputers in the world [top500.org]? Including the fastest in Europe [top500.org].

        Not to forget that Titanic, by far the highest grossing motion picture of all time, was rendered with the help of an AlphaPC server farm running Red Hat Linux [linuxjournal.com]. Admittedly, that was five years ago. But it was still a 64 bit OS.

        I must confess my bias, because I have two Alphas faithfully running Red Hat Linux at home. So far as performance is concerned, I'll be surprised if the Intel Itanium or even the AMD Hammer chips will compare favorably to comparable Alphas on floating point performance, which is very important in many high end applications.

        Of course, I could be wrong....

        • First of all, supercomputers are a little bit different... Having 1024 processors, no matter what the speed kicks ass. Further, I am not saying MIPS processors don't have the performance to be used at all.

          I am saying that MIPS processors are no longer being used in the manufacturing of new computers, nor are Alpha processors. Further, cost is a big factor here. I personally never had the money for an SGI or Alpha based system. You are one of the fortunate few, the elite, to be so privilaged.

          Good for you. But that doesn't change the fact that Alpha and MIPS processors are dead, and they were never used by the mainstream. I seem to recall reading somewhere that fewer than 10,000 Alpha systems were ever sold.

          Also, The hammer and Itanium processors will far exceed the Alpha on floating point operations. I mean, if they can't beat a four year old processor, they shouldn't be in business. I believe the IBM Power4, the latest PowerPC chip is still fastest.

          but thats a cool link on the supercomputers... cheers.

          • Also, FYI.. Athlon MP processors were used to make Episode II... not too shabby, for a 32-bit processor.

            AMD Technology Used for Production in Star Wars: Episode II Attack of the Clones

            SUNNYVALE, Calif., Jun 27, 2002 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- AMD (AMD) today announced its collaboration with JAK Films and Industrial Light & Magic (ILM), a division of Lucas Digital Ltd. LLC, in the production of "Star Wars: Episode II Attack of the Clones".

            JAK Films used AMD Athlon(TM) MP processor-based workstations in its labs to advance the art of cinema storyboarding through digital pre-visualization. ILM used a high-performance cluster of AMD Athlon MP processor-based servers designed and manufactured by RackSaver.

            "Our goal was to paint an accurate picture of what `Star Wars: Episode II Attack of the Clones' would look like long before filming was even started," said Dan Gregoire, director of the pre-visualization lab, JAK Films. "Our AMD Athlon MP processor-based systems are ideal for running the powerful software we rely upon."

            "Given the challenge of producing top quality visual imagery in a compressed time frame, we really appreciate the performance boost we got with our AMD Athlon MP processor-based systems," said Michael Kiernan, Manager of Systems R&D at ILM.

            "We at RackSaver, with our expertise in design and manufacturing of high-density, high-performance computing clusters, are excited to have met the critical computing demands required in the production of `Star Wars: Episode II Attack of the Clones,'" said David Driggers, CEO RackSaver.

            "George Lucas is admired for the many technical advances he has contributed to the film industry. The innovative AMD technology used by ILM and JAK Films is no exception, " said Ed Ellett, vice-president of product marketing for AMD's Computation Products Group. "JAK Films pre-visualized literally every scene in `Star Wars: Episode II Attack of the Clones,' which helped Lucas translate his vision to the big screen with exceptional accuracy. ILM is widely recognized in the film industry as a standard-bearer in visual effects and digital animation."

            Customers using systems based on powerful AMD Athlon MP processors can experience tremendous productivity, and fast turnaround time on a variety of graphically intensive tasks ranging from creating complex special effects sequences to manipulating video, audio content and high resolution still images.

            Note: For additional information about AMD's involvement in the production of "Star Wars: Episode II Attack of the Clones" please visit: http://www.amd.com/us-en/Processors/ProductInforma tion/ 0,,30_118_756_759^566~31514,00.html

          • I bought 10 indys for 1000 bucks 3 years ago. I still have 4 of them, the rest I gave to a high school a while back.
          • I am saying that MIPS processors are no longer being used in the manufacturing of new computers, nor are Alpha processors.

            The Alpha based supercomputers that are numbers 3 and 4 on the list were installed in 2001 and the one that's number 6 was installed this year. Clearly, the Alpha is nearly dead, but it's not quite dead yet.

            I seem to recall reading somewhere that fewer than 10,000 Alpha systems were ever sold

            The three supercomputers I just mentioned (nos 3, 4, and 6) have a combined count of 7600 CPU's. Admittedly, that's only three systems, but your statement is just ridiculous.

            Also, The hammer and Itanium processors will far exceed the Alpha on floating point operations. I mean, if they can't beat a four year old processor, they shouldn't be in business.

            Floating point operations have never been Intel's strong suit. For similar clock speeds, their CPU's get roundly trounced by Alpha, PPC, and others as well. I found an interesting page here [dl.ac.uk] that contains some enlightening comparisons. An 833 MHz Alpha beats a Pentium 4/2000 on the Specfp2000 benchmark, and it remains generally comparable throughout the tests. I suspect that Intel will beef up their results with the Itanium, but they have had the benefit of all the Dec/Compaq experience now that they own it.

            One thing I love about the Alpha is how incredibly cool it runs. It's amazing to open the case of my 533 MHz AlphaPC to look at relatively sparsely populated motherboard and note that the CPU has but a modest heat sink and no fan.

        • You can easily find DEC Personal Work Stations (PWS) in 433, 500 and 600MHz speeds for cheap on ebay (they're also known as "Miatas"). These machines are common. I got mine for under $600 a few years ago and it's been great as a workstation and a server.

          That and my awesome digital Server 3300R (a rack-mount 400MHz hot-swap alpha I got for $600 on ebay) have run SuSE, Red Hat and are now happily running the latest FreeBSD.

          Stop complaining you can't affort it. YOU CAN!

        • I'll be surprised if the Intel Itanium or even the AMD Hammer chips will compare favorably to comparable Alphas on floating point performance, which is very important in many high end applications.

          At the moment, only the new 1.0GHz Alpha EV68 chips are faster then the current P4 processors, and the Itanium and Athlon are right up there as well. The rather substatial lead in FP performance that the Alpha used to have has virtually disapeared these days when compared to x86 chips. The very fastest EV67 chips are slower then the fastest x86 chips (note: I'm using Spec CFP2000 for comparison here, if you know of any FP benchmarks that run on both platforms I'd like to hear about them).

          As for the future, Alpha's time on this planet is very limited. EV7 is still supposed to come out, and I've heard from reliable sources that it should post some very impressive scores for floating point due to it's HUGE memory bandwidth. However Intel's Itanium 2 is also supposed to post some rather impressive scores (they're talking about 1300-1350 in Spec CFP2000, which would put it ahead of the current champion Power4 processors from IBM). AMD's Hammer won't be any slouch either, as it's on-chip memory controller should boost it's score quite nicely.

          Like it or not, Alpha is dead. It's been sold many times and basically salavaged for scrap (Intel now owns most of the old Alpha technology). You're mentioning Titanic is actually quite approriate, because that was the last gasp for Alpha. If you look at new movie production, they're moving to x86, just like all the rest of the world. MIPS might have a future in the embedded space, where it's currently second to ARM. Alpha technology might have a bit of a future in Intel's IA-64 (though I'm skeptical as to how well they'll be able to integrate the pure-RISC Alpha technology into the VLIW IA-64 technology), but as a product on it's own, stick a fork in it.

          • At the moment, only the new 1.0GHz Alpha EV68 chips are faster then the current P4 processors, and the Itanium and Athlon are right up there as well. The rather substatial lead in FP performance that the Alpha used to have has virtually disapeared these days when compared to x86 chips. The very fastest EV67 chips are slower then the fastest x86 chips (note: I'm using Spec CFP2000 for comparison here, if you know of any FP benchmarks that run on both platforms I'd like to hear about them).

            As for the future, Alpha's time on this planet is very limited. EV7 is still supposed to come out, and I've heard from reliable sources that it should post some very impressive scores for floating point due to it's HUGE memory bandwidth. However Intel's Itanium 2 is also supposed to post some rather impressive scores (they're talking about 1300-1350 in Spec CFP2000, which would put it ahead of the current champion Power4 processors from IBM). AMD's Hammer won't be any slouch either, as it's on-chip memory controller should boost it's score quite nicely.


            This is a good summary, except that ignorant slashdotters reading this might not realize how far ahead P4, Alpha, Power4 and Athlon are in front of all other CPU architectures (i.e. PA-RISC, US III, Itanium1, MIPS, and most especially G4*) in single-CPU SPEC performance. Just to be clear: Alpha's performance is still at or near the top.

            * no, there's no official G4 SPEC entry (because Apple is too chicken), but c't benchmarked it and boy does it suck. SPECint performance on par with a 933 MHz PIII, and SPECfp on par with a 500 MHz one.

            Second, you probably haven't seen the leaked slide of SPEC scores for the 1250 MHz EV68 (they should be official at spec.org real soon now), which put it almost precisely equal to 1.3 GHz Power4 SPEC scores, despite not having the dubious advantage of 128MB L2 cache (under normal operation the Power4 cache is shared amongst 4 or 8 cores, but for SPEC one core gets it all).

            Third, EV7 will have a substantial lead in SPECfp upon release (and might briefly take SPECint as well), although there's no doubt that Power4 and P4 will continue to improve, and Itanium2 on SPECfp and Hammer on SPECint will also be contenders.

            But the most shocking part of all this is that, unlike Athlon/Hammer, P4, Itanium and Power4, Alpha is achieving all this performance on someone else's standard fab process (rather than tweaking the process to fit the chip design, which is a huge huge help; compare performance of those architectures where the designer owns the fab--P4, Athlon, Power4, Itanium--to those where it doesn't--PA, MIPS, SPARC). And, unlike current Athlons, Hammer, P4s since January, and Power4, it's an old .18um process. Alpha still gives more performance with fewer engineering resources than any other chip, and EV7 will only widen the gap.

            Like it or not, Alpha is dead. It's been sold many times and basically salavaged for scrap (Intel now owns most of the old Alpha technology). You're mentioning Titanic is actually quite approriate, because that was the last gasp for Alpha. If you look at new movie production, they're moving to x86, just like all the rest of the world. MIPS might have a future in the embedded space, where it's currently second to ARM. Alpha technology might have a bit of a future in Intel's IA-64 (though I'm skeptical as to how well they'll be able to integrate the pure-RISC Alpha technology into the VLIW IA-64 technology), but as a product on it's own, stick a fork in it.

            Again, you're correct. But the death of Alpha is entirely to do with marketing and zero to do with performance. Before Power4, Alpha was the clear single-CPU performance leader in the 64-bit market, and if the Alpha team had gotten more resources and support from Compaq, Alpha's performance lead would still be huge.

            That said, all of this seems slightly academic considering that for the past year and the forseeable future, the SPECint leader has been and will be a commodity x86 chip costing ~$600 (against 64-bit competition costing 100x that per CPU). The P4 seems to have taken on the Alpha mantle: world-beating SPEC performance with a high-clocked small-die chip utilizing innovative microarchitectural features and excellent circuit-level design. That it has done so despite being hobbled with the x86 ISA is even more impressive.
      • >Hell, as far as I understand it, Only IBM latest PowerPC processor outperforms the fastest Pentium 4's and Athlon processors.

        that would be IBM's POWER4. PowerPC chips only went into very low ned RS/6000's (and i dont think its even used in the RS/6k line anymore) and into mac's (before they went G*).
        • PowerPC is the instruction set. Power4 is IBM's most recent implementation. Motorola's G3s and G4s are also PowerPC chips, with an aditional SIMD extention (AltiVec).
        • Re: Power4 = PowerPC (Score:2, Interesting)

          by benzapp (464105)
          There is a common misunderstanding here about PowerPC chips. For a technical paper from the IBM Watson facility on the Power4 architecture, read here [ibm.com].

          This research paper clearly indicates that the Power4 processor utilizes the 64-bit extensions of outlined by the original PowerPC consortium. It also indicates that The Power4 refers more to the architecture of processor interconnects than the processor itself. Since the days of IBM writing OS/2, they have always rightly believed multiprocessing and multithreading provides the best performance.

          IBM did the vast majority of the work on the PowerPC processor, and owns the name to it. The reason Motorola processors are now called G* is because they do not own the rights to the title. The G3 was to be the PowerPC 670 proccessor as I recall. In all honesty, I amazed that people here think the G3 is not a PowerPC processor. How ludicrous is that? It was a pain apple's ass to get people to dump the 68k series in 1993, could you imagine what would have happened if a whole new archicture was used only five years later with the first G3? Apple would be out of business.

          I only wish I had the links on current benchmarks to refute the lunacy that the antiquated DEC Alpha is still the fastest processor but oh well.
      • Uhm, the Alpha CPU still outperforms a lot of CPUs today. I don't know about the latest chips from Intel and AMD compared with the Alpha, but about a year ago there was a comparison between 64-bit chips and a few 32-bit chips, the Alpha won by a huge margin.

        MIPS is still being used by SGI, and you can not tell me SGI is dead. They provide a big chunk of the workstations and renderfarms used to render special effects in movies (yes yes, I know, Linux is taking over in many place :).

        If I'm not mistaken, Samsung still produces the Alpha chips.
    • I'm not knocking Hammer, but why does everyone act like the Itanium and Hammer versions of Linux are the first 64 bit versions?

      Noone does. Everybody acts like the Itanium and Hammer will be the first 64 bit versions that will get substantial market share in both server and desktop environments. Like it or not, x86 is pretty big and important, so x86-64 and i64 will be pretty big and important.
    • There have been Mandrakes for SPARC & Alpha but apparently the market for these machines is very limited. I can remember a Linux expo with an Internet Café full of UltraSPARC running Mandrake 7.0, that was impressing!

      Anyway I think it's interesting to notice the move of Mandrake towards the corporate market. They started as a desktop distribution, and now, as they are known as a desktop distribution, they start to release products targeted to corporates (see the Mandrake Prosuite, the Single Firewall, or the very recent Advantech Firewall Plus (apparently only in Europe). I think it's an excellent strategy because as they have an "easy to use" image, it a big advantage to convince corporations to use their products.
      • I can remember a Linux expo with an Internet Café full of UltraSPARC running Mandrake 7.0, that was impressing!(sp)

        Especially impressive to me considering I can't get SILO straightened out on my Ultrasparc with Mandrake 7.1...or X running..or anything else that'd make it a usable box. Damn sparcs.
  • Suse? (Score:5, Informative)

    by Spyky (58290) on Saturday June 29, 2002 @02:57PM (#3792656)
    For those who don't know, because its very unclear from the article, Suse was the first (or at least before Mandrake) linux distro to announce Hammer support.

    Check it out here [www.suse.de]

    -Spyky
  • Exciting... (Score:3, Funny)

    by javilon (99157) on Saturday June 29, 2002 @02:57PM (#3792658) Homepage
    Why do they allways use the word "exciting". Do they copy and paste from each other?

    • Exciting!
    • by JanneM (7445) on Saturday June 29, 2002 @03:49PM (#3792845) Homepage
      Well, what do you expect? Ninety percent of press-releases are overhyped; they only exist to make something look big and significant. You might want something like this:

      "In a totally pedestrian move, Mandrake - as utterly expected - announced a totally unsurprising future port to the Hammer architecture. As everybody have realized for the past year, Linux will be running on the platform, and this of course includes all the major distributions. Spokesmen for the company added: 'of course, no end-users will see any actual results from this announcement for another year or so, when actual systems will be available'. Added the AMD spokesperson: 'As far as novelty value goes, this announcement is the equivalent of watching paint dry.' Both did add that they do get a little free press out of the announcement, making it more valuable than the paper it's printed on."

      /Janne
      • Yeah, it's strange the way the 'press release' has mutated into something no self-respecting journalist would ever use. It used to be that the art in writing press releases was to make them sound like an interesing story, not mentioning your own company too obviously, so that lazy journalists would more or less copy the whole thing.

        Even with Internet standards of journalism, I don't think any news site would take much notice of press releases like this one. So what is the intended audience?
        • The point of press releases today are more often than not just another way of showing that there is activity. There is often little or no intention of actually inform anybody; instead the point is in showing "interested parties", that includes investors and shareholders, that Things Are Happening. That use unfortunately debases the use of press releases for 'real' news, of course.

          Now, I'm not saying this is not interesting, or 'real' news. It might be, or might not; I'm not sufficiently knowledgeable about this aspect of the business to decide, but it the very existence of 'look at me!' press releases does debase the value of the announcement.

          /Janne
        • Speaking as someone who has worked in the technology press, I can tel you that writers love press releases.

          Haven't you noticed that most tech-reporting is crap.

          Some of the most successful tech writers just regurgitate press releases. Then the company they shill for rewards them by buying advertising in their magazine, or even better, buying the rights to reproduce the article for publicity purposes.

          Tech writers are mostly lazy scum of the earth, who never met a freebie they didn't like.
          • Some of the most successful tech writers just regurgitate press releases.

            Ted Bridis of the AP dabbled with that, which of course means all his and the rest of APs tech news goes unread over here. (He may or may not be with the AP still, I have no idea)

  • You could just download it now for Itanium processors. [linux-mandrake.com]

    "MandrakeSoft announces the availability of the Release Candidate of Mandrake Linux 8.1 for Intel Itanium Architecture. The Itanium 64-bit architecture is used for servers and computers which run highly demanding business applications, such as large database, ERM/CRM applications or advanced computing."
    • x86-64 is different from the Itanium's IA64.

      x86-64 is an extension to the regular x86 instruction set while the Itanium's instruction set is totally different.
      • Correct, however it's still useful if you have an Itanium. (Though, if you have an Itanium, you probably know enought that you won't be running Mandrake)
        • Mandrake isn't just for newbies. There have been lots of polls before and the majority of apache sites are running the Advanced Extranet Server tuned version from Mandrake. Actually I think it's either the second or third most popular server distro. Mandrakeforum has talked about this alot and other sites/polls have confirmed it.

          Mandrake has alot going for it actually. Decent security out of the box, the advanced apache server, good samba, etc. etc. plus it runs on damn near anything.
  • I'm sorry if I'm being a bit dense here, but nowhere in this message [matrixlist.com] can I find anything suggesting RedHat is going forward with x86-64.

    All I see is a (good) suggestion for altering the current set of RedHat install CDs to allow for processor-specific optimisations in the kernel/system binaries. There is mention of how this would carry through into x86-64 support, but this is just a suggestion from someone outside RedHat.
  • Linux is mature enough so that manufactures like those, (AMD, INTEL and other bigs) should themselfs start to buld support and not wait to the Linux boudles companies to do so. Organize teams like they have with MS to build the processor focused on the software and not the opposite.

    We had so manu troubles with ATHALON and the INTEL similar to instal RH amd Mandrake that it was almost tempting to change to a less powerfull machine.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Why does Mandrkae have to crow about something that is actually being developed by Linus, Ingo and others?

    I'm absolutely sure that Debian will also support AMD's Sledgehammer and so will Slackware and Redhat and SuSE.

    What also bugs me is the security advisories from all these companies....it sounds like they are doing the work (for example in the case of Apache's fix, it came from Apache and all the distro's just need to have one consolidated announcement saying LINUX rather than Mandrake/SuSE/etc)

    • by Xtifr (1323) on Saturday June 29, 2002 @05:31PM (#3793187) Homepage
      They're not crowing about the fact that they can compile for these systems, they're crowing about the fact that they are going to compile for these systems, and support them. Since compiling code into working binaries and supporting those binaries is what Mandrake does, I think they're justified in crowing about this. As a big AMD fan, I applaud Mandrake for this, even though I use and support Debian myself.

      Slackware and Redhat and SuSE may or may not support this platform directly, I don't know. It's certainly not guaranteed. There are plenty of platforms they don't support, even though they could. It's probably going to depend on whether they think they can make enough money off of it.

      And yes, Debian will almost certainly support the Hammer as soon as we get our hands on some. But then we're insane, and support everything we can. Who else still supports m68k and ARM? Who else is _adding_ support for HPPA and Super8? We do it because it's fun, not because we're trying to make money.

      (As for the thing about security advisories, that's a bit off-topic, but I will say that Debian's security list is intended for Debian's users, so that they know when officially supported packages are available, and it's not our fault that bugtraq decided to subscribe to our list. Complain to bugtraq if it bothers you that much.)
      • Yeah, I was just thinking that as I read this article. I thought, "Debian supports every practical platform and then some... whats the big news about some other Linux distro supporting a non x86 platform?"

        For those that want to experiment with a auto-hardware detecting graphical user-friendly installer for Debian should try the new (this is a beta release!!! be careful) Progeny Graphical Installer ISO images [debianplanet.org]. This installer is based on the now defunct Progeny Linux installer. Good Linux software doesn't drop dead, but instead gets reincarnated.

        Remember, Debian is not commercial and is purely community based. Helping beta test this new installer on all sorts of various systems will help.
  • Hmm... (Score:1, Interesting)

    by GreyWolf3000 (468618)
    I'm going to get modded down for this, but I'll go ahead and say it anyways:

    In the past, kernel development has quickly caught on to newer, more powerful processors and features...MTRR (I know what MTRR is thank you very much...), 3D Now instructions, etc. Why the need for official support? And AMD is also going along with this Palladium thing? If you ask me, there's a lot of companies grandiloquently talking up promised "corporate partnerships" that I don't see happening. I mean come on, folks, all AMD has to do is release some rudamentary specs and the kernel team can get right on it.

    I'm wary of "features" that require support from the entire OS and not the kernel...
    • (I know what MTRR is thank you very much...)
      I don't. By the power of Google, is this [tennessee4x4.com] it?

      (I'm joking of course. I'm pretty sure it's "Mean Time To Recovery" or "Mean Time To Repair", from other Google [google.com] results.)

      • MTRR (Score:3, Informative)

        by Paul Jakma (2677)
        MTRR == Memory Type Range Register

        Used to set different policy (uncacheable, write-back, write-combing) to address ranges. Eg, for address ranges that correspond to PCI addresses (ie memory mapped IO addresses), by setting these ranges to write-combining the CPU will try to gather writes up into big writes to make most efficient use of IO bus bandwidth. (ie get higher MB/s out of your AGP or PCI - important for graphics).

        see linux/Documentation/mtrr.txt and /proc/mtrr.
    • I think you're missing a few things here.

      x86-64 is not just a new feature of x86, it's completely extending the architecture to 64-bits. The Hammer chips will boot a standard i386 install just fine, however there's an entire new architecture being added to the kernel to support these processors! This is a LOT more involved then just adding support for MTRRs, 3DNow, SSE and the like.
  • Subtle troll (Score:1, Offtopic)

    by zulux (112259)
    The entire reason for this post is to see how many people gripe when I mis-spell Atheleon.

  • Worth noting (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward
    FreeBSD already announced report for x86-64 architecture a long time ago.
  • Ok, so they're going to support this new platform. That's great, but:

    Does "support" mean "put out a press release and then recompile all our packages once the kernel and gcc people do all the work"?

    If they're not contributing this is just a bullshit attention-grabbing publicity stunt.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    To provide customers with a powerful, scalable 64-bit Linux distribution with native 32-bit compatibility-

    Atadena, Paris - June 27, 2002, MandrakeSoft today announced they are cooperating with AMD to port Mandrake Linux to the forthcoming eighth-generation AMD AthlonTM and AMD OpteronTM processor-based platforms.

    Delivering on its commitment to innovative development in the Linux arena, the MandrakeSoft research and development team has begun work on adapting the Mandrake Linux operating system to run optimally on the upcoming AMD processors.

    AMD is collaborating with MandrakeSoft to ensure rapid porting and commercial availability of Mandrake Linux for 64-bit AMD Athlon and AMD Opteron processors. AMD Athlon and AMD Opteron processors, based on x86-64 technology, have been designed to support large, intensive workloads providing high-performance solutions for desktops, workstations and servers. The new processors can benefit customers by providing 64-bit application support, while also offering optimized, native support for 32-bit Linux applications to provide a smooth transition from a 32-bit to a 64-bit environment.

    "This new generation of AMD Athlon and AMD Opteron processors is extremely exciting. A version of Mandrake Linux dedicated to these powerful 64-bit processors can certainly accelerate MandrakeSoft's growing adoption in the Linux corporate market" said Jacques Le Marois, CEO of MandrakeSoft.

    "The 64-bit version of Mandrake Linux optimized for the upcoming eighth-generation AMD Athlon and AMD Opteron processors can provide enterprise customers with a powerful, reliable and easy to install and use Linux distribution", said Robert Stead, Director of European Marketing, AMD.

    Mandrake Linux 9.x for the upcoming 64-bit AMD Athlon and AMD Opteron processors is expected to be commercially available by the beginning of 2003.

    About Mandrake Linux

    Mandrake Linux is a powerful operating system that is available for the Intel Pentium®, AMD Athlon®, and PowerPC® processors. Mandrake Linux includes many graphical administration assistants & wizards that make it intuitive and fun to use while providing all the power and robustness of other Linux systems. Hundreds of included applications make it an ideal solution for both enterprises and individual users. Mandrake Linux is seen as the most feature-rich, multi-purpose Linux operating system ever made available.

    About MandrakeSoft

    MandrakeSoft provides a trusted interface between users of information technology and open source developers. The company offers its enterprise, government and educational customers a set of GNU Linux and Open-Source software and related services, and user-friendly and highly competitive information technologies. In addition, MandrakeSoft offers technologists committed to open software and courseware a trusted channel to offer their services.

    The company has technologists in over 20 countries, and is traded on Paris Euronext Marche Libre (Euroclear code: 4477.PA; Reuters code: MAKE.PA) and the US OTC market (stock symbol MDKFF). "Born on the Internet'' in late 1998, MandrakeSoft has established headquarters in the U.S.A., Montreal, England and France. Please visit the Web site, http://www.mandrakesoft.com for more information.

    About the AMD OpteronTM Processor

    The AMD Opteron processor is based on AMD's eighth-generation processor core which is planned to mark the introduction of the industry's first x86-64 technology. This technology is planned to preserve companies' investments in 32-bit applications while allowing a seamless transition to 64-bit computing as those companies require.

    The AMD Opteron processor is designed to deliver high-performance server and workstation solutions for today's most demanding enterprise applications. The processor is designed to be scalable, reliable and compatible, which can result in lower total cost of ownership. Key AMD Opteron processor innovations include an integrated memory controller, which reduces memory bottlenecks, and HyperTransport(TM) technology, which increases overall performance by removing or reducing I/O bottlenecks, increasing bandwidth and reducing latency.

    About AMD

    AMD is a global supplier of integrated circuits for the personal and networked computer and communications markets with manufacturing facilities in the United States, Europe, Japan, and Asia. AMD, a Fortune 500 and Standard & Poor's 500 company, produces microprocessors, Flash memory devices, and support circuitry for communications and networking applications. Founded in 1969 and based in Sunnyvale, California, AMD had revenues of $3.9 billion in 2001. (NYSE: AMD - News).

    NOTE: Linux is a registered trademark of Linus Torvalds. AMD, the AMD Arrow logo, AMD Athlon, AMD Opteron, and combinations thereof, and AMD-8151 are trademarks of Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. HyperTransport is a trademark of the HyperTransport Technology Consortium. Mandrake and Mandrake Linux are trademarks of MandrakeSoft. All other trademarks and copyrights are owned by their respective companies.
    • Didn't I read somewhere that the AMD Opteron will be able to run both 32 and 64 bit applications, whereas the Intel counterpart will only run 64 bit? This is in response to:

      "This technology is planned to preserve companies' investments in 32-bit applications while allowing a seamless transition to 64-bit computing as those companies require."

      So, does this mean that something like Mandrake 8, that I am running now (with Mozilla build 2002061108, aka 1.1a) will run on the Opteron? I'm asking this in this thread as it appears some of you know quite a bit about these new processors, and might like to give us some information;-)
      • AMD Hammer/Opteron is completely IA32 (ie normal 32bit x86) compatible - all IA32 OSes boot on it, it has a standard IA32 BIOS, applications will run fine on it. If you run a x86-64 OS, then you will be able to run both 32bit and 64bit x86-64 software (side by side).

        Ie x86-64 is:

        - IA32 (8086 mode et al too - i /guess/)
        - standard IA32 BIOS
        - additional x86-64 mode

        Apparently 32-bit Linux and Windows booted almost first time on early silicon, and they've had absolutely no 32bit compatibility problems - it all works. then it took just a week for AMD to get linux to boot into x86-64 mode (iirc from the talk linked below).

        IA64 / Itanium on the other hand is a completely new architecture:

        - completely different instruction set
        - completely different ABI
        - new weird "look it does everything" BIOS (EFI)
        - IA32 is /emulated/ in silicon and hence slow

        There's a good talk by an AMD engineer on the AMD Hammer arch. given at the recent kernel summit at:

        http://ksmp3rep.sf.net/KSMP3s/amd64.mp3 [sf.net]

        found amongst other kernel summit talks at:

        http://linuxkernel.foundries.sourceforge.net/artic le.pl?sid=02/06/26/0116225 [sourceforge.net]
  • I've heard lots of bad stuff about the x86 architecture...

    hacks upon hacks...

    Do any of these new 64 bit processors offer a way out?

    Is backward compatability with 8086, 286, 386 (sx and dx), 486(sx and dx), 586, 686 now trivial, or solved with a (long term low significance cost to benifit ratio)?
    </flame>
    • I've heard lots of bad stuff about the x86 architecture...
      hacks upon hacks...


      That's overstating things. Go to Intel's site and dowload the PDF file describing the Pentium II instruction set. It's absolutely huge. There are hundreds and hundreds of instructions, and the funny thing is that only minority--maybe 30%--really matter. The rest of them are things like MMX, old instructions that are no longer relevant, and lots of peculiar special purpose instructions that are rarely used. And this is only the Pentium II, so it doesn't include all of the SIMD instructions added with the P3.

      So most of the cruft comes from old stuff that was relevant at one time, and now there's no way to get rid of it. It isn't because of hacks, per se.
      • I understand that compatability is good for migration...

        I've heard the most bad things about BIOS and bus, and other aspects... not just the x86 processors...

        When will it be worthwhile to start getting rid of the not used stuff?

        Are they keeping the short word instructions doing what they did, or are they making them do more usefull stuff...

        (I suppose you could have a single instruction perform multiple operations... one that is old spec and one that is new spec.

        Maybe I am considering something to be a problem that isn't...
        but as the instruction set increases, don't we have to have more bits to to describe the instruction?... Now I am realising that memory addressing is the big benefit for larger... bus width?

        Also, how much faster are natively compiled for transmeta applications than those that go through the instruction conversion caching? (I think thats a way of putting it)

        Thank you for your discourse, I am attempting to learn stuff from this conversation.
        </cow>
    • If people wanted a clean architecture, they would have bought Alpha's. The thing is, the vast majority don't give a rats ass about computer architectures. They only want to know one thing:

      Does it run my application?

      x86-64 does, without re-compiling. People can move at their own pace, when they want to move. IA-64 is making the mistake of Alpha. Few apps, high price, force people to change to get on board.

    • All of them do.

      thats the whole point of new architecture.
    • Intel's Itanium is different than AMD's 64 bit processor. It is a completely new RISC architecture and Intel and HP developed together. It does not build upon the x86 "hacks". Compatibility with existing x86 code is achieved with an on-chip x86 emulation unit.
    • You know, everyone complains about how x86 is just "hacks upon hacks", but guess what, it's the cheapest platform out there and it outperforms damn near everything else!

      Right now, only Power4 and the Alpha EV68 are the only chips in the same ballpark as x86 when it comes to raw processing power. In Spec CINT2000, x86 (P4 2.53GHz) manages a score of 896, to beat out ALL other chips. The 1.3GHz Power4 scores 839, while the 1.0GHz Alpha EV68 scores 679. In Spec CFP2000, IBM and DEC/Compaq/HP redeem themselves slightly, with scores of 1266 and 960 respectively, as compared to 879 for the Intel chip.

      Alpha has been on the chopping block for some time. Sun? They're SPARC chips and especially their systems as a whole have some advantages, but when it comes to raw processing power, $2000+ USIII chips are beaten by $100 x86 chips by a factor of almost 2 to 1 in most tests.

      x86 may have it's problems, and it's certainly not the nicest architecture to write assembly for. But guess what, no one writes in assembly anymore, and compilers have been better optimized for x86 then for any other architecture. So why do people always complain about x86? Well let's see:

      Complaint #1: Backwards compatibility holding it back.

      Answer: As mentioned above, there are only two chips out there that are faster then x86 chips, and both of those cost a LOT more and neither are all that much faster. Backwards compatibility has also been the reason why x86 has sold so well over the years and is the best supported architecture with the widest selection of software.

      Complaint #2: Not enough registers.

      Answer: x86 is slightly limited by it's registers, but due to it's CISC nature it doesn't need as many registers as a RISC chip does and no where near as many as RISC chips. What's more, register renaming allows for x86 chips to have a lot more registers then it initially seems like it has (you just can't use them all at the same time).

      Complaint #3: x87 stack is dumb

      Answer: There is no answer to this, except maybe SSE2. The x87 stack is dumb (I'll grant the complainers this one! :> ). However even this has been mostly worked around by the compilers, to the point where x86 chips are now some of the fastest chips out there at floating point.

      Complaint #4: Decoding CISC instructions to RISC instructions is a waste of time.

      Answer: The decoding front-end of a moern x86 chip is now a rather small proportion of the total chip and can usually keep the backend well fed (assuming that the decoders can get data from the cache fast enough). What's more, perhaps the most interesting feature of the P4 is it's trace cache, which caches already decoded instructions, there by removing the decoders from ~95% of all instructions executed (AMD doesn't have this yet).

      So where does AMD's x86-64 fit into all of this? Well, it maintains backwards compatibility with all previous chips (x86's real strength), it should offer rather impressive performance (particularly the Opteron and 64-bit Athlon should improve the I/O performance of x86 systems, which had traditionally been one of the weak points). It also helps on the register front, in that x86-64 doubles the number of available registers. It doesn't do anything to fix the x87 stack, but even that is mostly compensated for by the generally high quality of x86 compilers. Other then that, the real reason for it is to add seamless 64-bit support.

  • It always appeared to me that Nandrake/Suse was most strongly targeted at the desktop, while redhat maintained the most alignment with the server market.

    A serious comitment by Mandrake/Suse to the server market my be pulling mandrake in too many directions at once.

    -Chris

  • by artsygeek (582248)
    Mandrake needs to make the 64-bit version a more server-friendly design....and make it less desktop-ish....for now.... I mean, Mandrake's great in that I can get any member of my family to install linux or config their system or whatever with it, but it needs to "cut the fat" that comes with it being an all-inclusive desktop OS.....of course that's just my opinion...I could be wrong...
    • Mandrake needs to make the 64-bit version a more server-friendly design....and make it less desktop-ish

      You know what, I would agree with you that mandrake in general should be less bloated. But I don't think that de-emphasizing the desktop for x86-64 is wise at all--if anything they should make it even more desktop-focused than the current x86 version. Why? Well, its very likely that some kind of Linux (along with NetBSD of course) will be the only usable operating system on the x86-64 platform when it arrives. There will be a brief window, when the hardware is available, but Windows hasn't been ported yet, that running a free *nix will be the only option for anyone who wants to use x86-64 hardware.

      Of course it will be used in a lot of servers, but these people won't choose mandrake anyway (I would be surprised if any of the major distributions don't have x86-64 distributions available soon after the hardware is publicly released, as long as a good compiler is available and most common software compiles with minimal trouble). But certainly people will be drawn to this platform for high-end desktop applications also, and the very fact that there will be no full-performance native alternative will render many of the typical arguments against desktop linux moot, and offer an opportunity to draw users in who might not consider it otherwise. So I think there NEEDS to be a good desktop distribution for x86-64 available when the hardware arrives.
    • ACk, where are my mod points when I need them. -1 overrated.

      Mandrake IS server-friendly. Consider this: alot of companies are running NT and win2k right now. Their admins are toying with linux to see if they can save some cash and add some stability to their networks. These point-and-clicky MSCE's are going to shoot for a distro they can point-and-click their way to success on. Mandrake happens to be one of these distros.

      Also there's no gun in the installer that points to your head and says "install ALL the desktop cruft or I'll shoot you". I got a minimum install on my old Compaq rackmount server that weighed about 100 megs and you could make it even smaller. This was DURING install, not post-install. Individual package selection is where it's at, you gotta do an expert install and have some foresight.

      Maybe you haven't seen or used or installed Mandrake in awhile. I suggest you try it on a server soon just for fun. There are thousands of people (if not tens or hundreds of thousands) using Mandrake to serve right now regardless of it's desktop orientation. I happen to be one of them.
  • ... So rumour has it it will start KDE in less than a minute. :) </old joke&gt.
  • by frooyo (583600) on Saturday June 29, 2002 @04:18PM (#3792947)
    Talk about how people say MIPS and Alpha is dead (just a little trolling) - who honestly uses or knows of someone using a 386 anymore.

    Why don't all distro companiesstart atleast compiling for 486 and also have at the least a distro that is compiled entirely for, say 586 (like Mandrake).

    I don't understand why companies like RedHat (who make a great solid modern distro) don't make available for the more modern processors a distro optimized for it.

    Why sacrafice new technology (speed) for the old and thus making the new run at the speeds of the old?
    • Give gentoo [gentoo.org] a try. You tell it what processor you have and it compiles and optimises every piece of software you install (including glibc, gcc, linux) for your processor.

      This, and some other advantages of compiling from source, make this distro much faster than any other I've tried.

      The install process is definitely not for the inexperienced, so your point about precompiled distros still applies, but once it is installed, it is very easy to administrate, and one of the first to get new security packages (I woke up after OpenSSH 3.4 was released and typed 'emerge rsync openssh' and it was installed).

      Sorry to come across as yet another offtopic smug evangelising gentoo user... I guess I am :P</rant>

    • I'm amazed about such ignorance. It's been _3_ years that Mandrake comes compiled for i586 and more (it comes with gcc optimizations for pentium instructions set), so you can't run a Mandrake on a i386 or a i486 machine (they released a version of Mandrake 7.0 for i486 but it seems that as the demand for these processors is very low, they abandonned it).
      • Right - demand for i486's is low.

        Well - I had a couple of them and found OpenBSD is broken on the AHA1542 SCSI cards, broken on the AHA2842 32bit VL bus SCSI cards and these old boxen won't run big IDE drives.

        Mandrake doesn't run at all on them and I don't feel like putting up redhat which will run just fine.

        So I gave up and gave in to progress and spent $100 bux and picked up a pair of 200Mhz machines with 64MB ram. These run just fine thank you. My only mistake was not buying 4 of those machines!!!

        My point is that high quality pentium class machines are so cheap there is zero reason to use those old 386's and 486's. I have some to give away for free if anyone is interested. Alas, it is sad but they really are at the end of their useful life.
      • You should reread the post that you just called ignorant. He mentions that Mandrake comes compiled for the Pentium and wonders why everybody doesn't do the same thing.
    • I wish Mandrake would produce i586, 1686+mmx, and k7+3dnow distros. It would be a lot easier than recompiling everything myself. GCC is about to have automagic use of 3Dnow! instructions (should be in 3.2, IIRC) which would boost system speeds a bunch.
    • Aside from the fact that I still run a 386, you should know that there is a difference between processor compatibility and processor optimization. Code can be mostly optimized for a Pentium-IV and still run on a 386.

      Anyway, do you have any evidence that breaking 386 compatibility would provide any performance benefit?

  • Why sit around and wait for somebody else to compile the images for you? Use a source based disto dammit, one that grabs the source to your system and then compiles it. As other people commented before, most linux apps are allready 64bit ready. Because most needs to be compileable on MIPS/ALPHA/SPARC platforms.

    GCC(and binutils) supports compiling to x86-64 , this is still experimental though. But searching/looking abit in the mailinglist archives @ x86-64.org show that stuff like qt allready are comiling fine, only needing a wee-change in the makefile(Link [x86-64.org]).I think thats quite impressive, and im willing to bet good money that GCC has production class x86-64 support by the time the processor is actually available to buy.

    So, armed with gcc and a version of Gentoo [gentoo.org], Linux From Scratch [linuxfromscratch.org] or any other sourcebased disto that supports compiling the entire system from scratch. You will beable to create/compile your very own system, which can be WAY more optimized that anything a vendor does(i cant really see how its possible for a precompiled kernel images cant be optimized to a system).

    The the only bad thing about thiese kinda of disto s is that big large packages as x/gnome/openoffice/what-ever takes for ever to compile. But on 64bit processor, who cares =)
  • by mchappee (22897)
    >'A version of Mandrake Linux dedicated to these powerful
    >64-bit processors can certainly accelerate MandrakeSoft's
    >growing adoption in the Linux corporate market'
    said
    >Jacques Le Marois, CEO of MandrakeSoft.

    *swat* Bad CEO! Bad, bad! AMD is not doing very well in the corporate market. PHBs just don't like it. Sure, the grunts that take care of the machines like it, but they (we) just don't have the pull when it comes to writing a check. Imagine this conversation:

    Me:"Hey boss, if we went with Corp_PC-A instead of Corp_PC-B, we would save about $200 per computer!"
    Boss:"Really? What's the difference between the two?"
    Me:"Corp_PC-B uses an AMD processor instead of an Intel."
    Boss:"Whoa, now. The processor is pretty important, right? I don't think that we want to skimp there. We better 'go long' on the processor and trim the fat on memory and disk space. Oh, and stick a Trident video card in there for good measure! Silly hacker, what do you know about corporate responsibility. Go fix me turkey pot pie!"

    OK, a little creative leeway. The point is that Intel has the aura of a rock-solid performer, while AMD has a hacker/gamer hippie case-modder feel.

    Besides, AMD lost it's underdog luster to me when they struck a deal with Microsoft to testify [siliconvalley.com] on their behalf for an endorsement. [infoworld.com]

    Matthew
    In or near St. Louis? Hire me [mattshouse.com]
  • 99.99% of what I run will be much more effecent with 32 bit ints than 64 bit ints. At work we use 64 bit sparcs and they can run in 32 bit mode. They are slightly faster for what we do in 32 bit mode than 64 bit mode.

    I don't think most businesses will ever go to 64 bit because its just the wrong step. Most code that will get any speed advantage out of 64 bits will get more advanatge out of 256 bit but thats an insane amount of data to push around for task swaps.

    About the only thing that hits the 64 bit sweet spot is database access and disk access routines but in reality they do thouse calcualtions so seldom, that they lose the advanatges with task swaping in most cases. You can do an 32 bit add with carry into another 32 bit add about 400 times faster than you can dump the extra bits on the stack.

    If you look at the high speed database base benchmarks, most of them are running on systems where the register stacks don't ever get out of the cache if even out of the register windows (as in Sparc)

    With the pc server market no longer subsidising that fastest machines, the gamer market (and super computer field) are all thats left and those markets aren't interesting enough for most compaines to spend billions in R&D.
    • You're actually quite right in general, 32-bits is enough for most applications and, all else being equal, it IS faster then 64-bits (half as much data to read from memory).

      Now, that being said, there are a few reasons for going to 64-bits. The real main reason is the native support for more then 4GB of memory. You can hack support for more then 4GB of memory into a 32-bit processor (see Intel's PSE), but it's not pretty. This was a bad kludge when it was done back in the 16-bit days, and it's still a bad kludge.

      The second reason for going to x86-64 in particular instead of standard x86 is that it doubles the number of registers you have available. This is not a 32-bit vs. 64-bit issue in general, but rather an x86 vs. x86-64 in specific issue. AMD estimates that this will boost performance by 5 to 15% on applications, simply by recomiling them for x86-64 (same hardware and same compiler, just x86 vs. x86-64).

      As for the people who talk about "why don't we have 256-bit processors yet" though, you're dead-on as to the reason, they would quite simply be SLOW. The "128-bit" processors that you see in modern gaming consoles like the Playstation 2 are talking about VERY different bitness then in the general computing world (what they talk about is more analogous to the 128-bit or 256-bit graphics cards that most PCs use these days).
  • All -- that LEAP-CF post is mine. That is not a "rumor" but just my "recommendation" to RedHat. Nothing more.

  • With AMD's announcement that they will be supporting the DRM push by building in DRM features into CPUs / motherboards, I wonder how long can the Linux community tolerate (and contribute to) their AMD Hammer architecture.
    Surely these hardware embedded cyber-cops will require closed-source, patented drivers and will dissolve the usefullness of the GPL and Linux.
    http://www.theregister.co.uk/content/54/25905.html > [theregister.co.uk]
    http://www.theregister.co.uk/content/4/25891.html& gt; [theregister.co.uk]
    Isn't it time to do something about this now?
    Do we really trust AMD to do the right thing, or will they take advantage of Open Source developers right until the last nail is hammered into our coffin and then run all the way to the bank?
    HINT: AMD is an American for-profit corporation.

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