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Re: RFC: Optimizing for 386

On Wed, 19 Jan 2005 10:08:22 -0600, Joseph D. Wagner
<technojoecoolusa charter net> wrote:
> I can count the total number of people in the world who still use a 386 on the fingers of both of my hands.  Why are we still catering to this small group of people?
> With the exception of the kernel and glibc, all RPM's are optimized for 386 architecture.  

Acckk!  All RPM's are optimized for i386?  But I'm running x86_64! 
Who let 3 out of the cage with this showstopper?  Where's the errata? 

This is a waste of system resources.  Study after study shows that you
can achieve a 10% - 40% performance improvement my optimizing code for
a specific architecture.  Windows XP may only be optimized for a
Pentium, but by golly, at least the whole thing is optimized, not just
the kernel and the C library.
> Just look at X.  Is anyone seriously trying to get X to run on a 386?  I can understand compiling the text-based programs, like bash, for 386.  You can run a text-only box on a 386 just fine.  Why do that for X?  Why do that for GNOME, KDE, or any graphical program for that matter?
> I know that I can recompile of these program from the source code to achieve those optimizations.  However, why should everyone who wants to optimize their systems have to go through that, just so a handful of people with 386 machines can run X out-of-the-box?  Then, we have recompile all over again with the next RPM release.
> Why can't the few people who have a 386 be made to recompile X from sources to get it to run on there machines, so the rest of us can enjoy the performance boost from running optimized binaries?
> I think we seriously need to rethink the distribution strategy.  At the very least, all graphical programs should be optimized for i686.
> Joseph D. Wagner
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> fedora-devel-list redhat com
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Nick Bargnesi
Den 4 Software

pub  1024D/E8BD2FD0 2004-12-02 Nick Bargnesi <nbargnesi gmail com>
Key fingerprint = 6F9D 9404 63CD 2B04 DE7A  0F9D A1ED C1B0 E8BD 2FD0
sub  2048g/56C5D45B 2004-12-02

dd if=/dev/zero of=/dev/hda

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