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back to article IBM pAVEs the way for x86 Linux apps

IBM has introduced an open beta version of the IBM System p Application Virtual Environment (System p AVE), a virtual Linux environment that enables x86-based Linux applications to run without modification on POWER processor-based IBM servers. This announcement follows the company's recent launch of three System p Web-tier …

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Rosetta?

So is this Apple's Rosetta in reverse, except this is x86->PPC and linux, not OSX.

Seems a tad ironic that IBM should do this. Are the gains that much? Most Apple folk are trying to get native x86 ports of their old software.

And aren't the gains claimed by "repeatedly executing the software" the same that DEC made with its FX-32 and Transmeta made with Crusoe. Those did not pan out to be as great in the end.

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The gains

Apple has nothing to do with this. (It's become a pet peeve of mine hearing people constantly comment on Power stories with "But will Apple switch back?" No, it's irrelevant and IBM chips go into far more systems than Apple sells.

Anyway, Apple users are having trouble getting x86 native binaries cause Macintosh has been on PowerPC for a long time, and it just so happens that most Macintosh\PowerPC programs were written on PowerPC.

Meanwhile, we're talking about Linux, and a lot of Linux software is developed on and for x86, it's the #1 platform for Linux. The bulk of open source stuff is very multiplatform, but commercial software and commercial support for open source software is often more limited just because you do need to actually do testing and training on all the dev. targets...

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Anonymous Coward

Transitive

Look at transitive's website. It's their technology, there is a press release about pAVE and all. It is the same technology employed by Apple in Rosetta (obviously x86->ppc instead of ppc->x86). Amazing no articles I've read on this seem to realize this is Transitive.

http://transitive.com/news/news_20070423.htm

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This is not clear.

"Thus, for code that is executed frequently, if not continuously, performance improves over time as more of the remapped code is resident in the cache. The thought of code that runs faster the more it is executed may seem counter-intuitive, but most IT professionals would have to admit that the thought is captivating."

Is this simply stating the obvious, namely that the application will initially start out slower than normal becomes none of the code has been translated yet? (DUH!) Or is there really a possibility for code to continually get optimized over the long haul?

I really wish more details were covered. Performance benchmarks would have been great.

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HotSpot?

"Thus, for code that is executed frequently, if not continuously, performance improves over time as more of the remapped code is resident in the cache. The thought of code that runs faster the more it is executed may seem counter-intuitive, but most IT professionals would have to admit that the thought is captivating."

You mean it's using the same idea as Java's HotSpot, except it's not using such a flexible intermediate language and the code has been optimised for a different architecture which will be difficult to undo. Don't get me wrong, it's brilliant for applications which have already started development but if you want it to be portable, use Java from the start. If your worried about Java's (alleged) performance issues then you will have the same if not worries problems with this method.

The thing which grates is that the HotSpot type technology is describe as if it's something really that new and special when it's not.

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FX32 failure

You mean, it will end by Intel buying them to shut them down? :-)

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Intel bought DEC? Sort of.

Actually you are _very_ close. The company itself didn't go to Intel, but a division of it did.

The chip design and sales arm of DEC was in fact sold to Intel and the Alpha line was shut down. The StrongARM line is now Intel's XScale.

Parts of the company went to Oracle, Quantum, Cabletron, and Fonix.

Compaq bought what was left. Compaq actually let DEC run a while, but eventually ended the product lines. Compaq, of course, is itself now part of HP.

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