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A Day For Surprises Astounding Itanium Tricks

A Day For Surprises Astounding Itanium Tricks 4598
there have been various looks at doing 360-370 simulation on itanium (porting existing i86 simualtors to itanium) going back to the earliest days of itanium design. in the...

When using Google Groups, I clicked on a sponsored link which piqued my curiosity.... about the advantages of computers using the new dual-core Itanium 2 chips.

When I followed that link, I learned, much to my surprise, that unlike mainframe architectures such as z-Architecture, or RISC architectures such as MIPS, or SPARC, or PowerPC...

the Itanium is *not a proprietary architecture*.

Still looking for help
I totally agree with saving these things Redwolf Sorry i don't know your real name but i was just pointing out my opinion about where...

I knew the MIPS architecture was proprietary - and so were the 64-bit extensions to the 360 architecture from IBM - but the SPARC and PowerPC architectures, while they *are* proprietary too, are available for licensing on generous terms.

But as far as I knew, EPIC was patented. Well, maybe, what with Intel being so big, anbreastrust law limits how proprietary the Itanium architecture can be. Certainly, the x86 architecture from Intel appears in a lot of chips from other suppliers.

But then I had a *second* surprise. And this one turned out to be true. Well, sort of.

The Itanium can run OS-390 and z-OS! No, really.

A Day For Surprises Astounding Itanium Tricks 4599
And, of course, *this* reminds me. Back when the Intel Mac was just a rumor, I suggested that, since unlike the Pentium, the Itanium has...

Actually, I shouldn't have been too surprised after all.

Remember when Intel decided that the hardware on the Itanium chip for executing x86 programs was so wretched that better performance could be obtained by a software package for executing x86 code?

As it happens, the technique of "Just-in-Time compilation", recently discovered, *is* a highly efficient way of emulating other architectures entirely in software. And some Itanium chips were claimed to execute x86 code with what was essentially an independent chip of 486-style design on the die. I'm surprised at that: given that the Itanium shares data types with the x86, it should have been possible to have an Itanium control unit and an x86 control unit share the same ALUs for more equal performance.

Anyways, if an Itanium can do a good job of executing x86 code through JIT, why not z-Architecture code? And Amdahl and Intel apparently got together on this - now spinning off a company called "Platform Solutions" -

that sells systems using this software. (They refer elsewhere to 'patented microcode technology'; given that Intel was involved, they certainly could have done that, but elsewhere they refer to their solution as a JIT solution.)

John Savard

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A Day For Surprises Astounding Itanium Tricks 4598

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