Panther not quite a 64-bit OS. Apparently, the G5 implement...

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by MacBytes, Jul 7, 2003.

  1. yzedf macrumors 65816

    yzedf

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2002
    Location:
    Connecticut
    #2
    OS X 10.3 is not 64bit

    http://www.theregister.co.uk/content/39/31600.html

    This was rather obvious (to me), just by the fact that 10.2.x -> 10.3.x is a minor reivision change (using standard *nix numbering schema). My guess is 64bit will be called OS XI or OS 11 or OS Eleven.
     
  2. Daveman Deluxe macrumors 68000

    Daveman Deluxe

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2003
    Location:
    Corvallis, Oregon
    #3
    For some reason, I don't think that Apple is necessarily using the standard Unix numbering scheme. I've heard that Apple may be avoiding the whole-number change because they don't want to be OS X 11. That's speculation, though.

    I don't know how it will work, but I suspect that Panther will install in 64-bit mode on G5s, and 32-bit mode on other Macs.
     
  3. macphoria macrumors 6502a

    macphoria

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2002
    #4
    That makes sense. If they want people with older machines to buy new Panther, they wouldn't want to confuse them by saying "Panther is 64bit software" or whatever. They can simply market Panther as latest super duper OS and make it detect machine type when installing.
     
  4. LimeLite macrumors 6502a

    LimeLite

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2003
    Location:
    Los Angeles, Ca
    #5
    Per reports, there will not be two different versions of the OS. Panther will not be a 64-bit OS. Panther is 32-bit, but there will be some parts of it in which the G5 can utilize some 64-bit code. (Much like how G3's can still use programs optimized for G4's Altivec engine.) I was hoping for a 64-bit OS, but apparently that's not going to happen for a while.
     
  5. macphoria macrumors 6502a

    macphoria

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2002
    #6
    That sucks. I gotta think that will hurt Apple's credibility or commitment to 64bit computing, if they introduce 64bit machine yet not have a single software that is designed for 64bit. If they want people to really taste the power of 64bit computing, they should have at least couple of softwares that can demonstrate that.
     
  6. strider42 macrumors 65816

    strider42

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2002
    #7
    I think the main reason si that for the vast majority of programs, 64 bit offers just about no advantage overall.

    meanwhile, a 64 bit only OS would then not install on any other product. having two versions means additional testing and support for an Os that would be inistalled on a fraction of the machines apple would sell or have in their installed base, and probably would require two different CD's to be included in any future retail version, increasing costs again.

    But, a 32 bit OS, doesn't mean the programs can't be 64 bit, and as evidenced by the larger amount of ram the G5 can take, apple is leveragin the 64 bit architecture.

    The importance of the 970 isn't that its 64 bit, its the system bus and amount of ram that can be used. since its 32 bit backwards compatible, it only makes sense for panther to be 32 bit.
     
  7. macphoria macrumors 6502a

    macphoria

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2002
    #8
    That is a very good point in terms of technology. However in terms of marketing, I really would like to see Apple come out and say "here is world's first 64bit desktop computer and here is 64bit OS to go with it"

    And with regard to sending out 2 sets of discs, one for 32bit and one for 64bit, as Daveman Deluxe pointed out that they could make 1 set of discs that can install either 32bit or 64bit software depending on the machine configuration. And I think that is possible and decent solution.
     
  8. MacsRgr8 macrumors 604

    MacsRgr8

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2002
    Location:
    The Netherlands
    #9
    One thing I don't get:
    A 32 bit processor can't address more RAM than 4 GB.
    A 1.8 GHz G5 can store up to 8 GB RAM. Why?
    Question: Can a 64 bits G5 which is running a 32 bits OS address more than 4 GB?
    Are the limits different? 4 GB per thread? 4 GB per process?

    If it is possible for a 64 bits processor to address more RAM than a 32 bits processor running the same OS, then Apple won't HAVE to make a 64 bits OS just for that reason. Making it possible for FCP 5 (?) to address more pysical RAM than is available on a DVD writable can be a selling point on its own.....
     
  9. strider42 macrumors 65816

    strider42

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2002
    #10
    i dunno, Os X is pretty large. i don't know if its possible to recompile something on the fly (or if thats all that would be necessary anyway), so I'm thinking that the two versions would simply be too big to fit on the same CD.
     
  10. Daveman Deluxe macrumors 68000

    Daveman Deluxe

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2003
    Location:
    Corvallis, Oregon
    #11
    I think the idea is that it would be feasible to send a set of CDs out with both the 32-bit and the 64-bit OS on it. The installer itself would determine what files need to go onto the HD. I suspect that if that were the scenario, Panther will be a three-disc set. The thought of putting the source on the discs and then compiling on the end user's system really doesn't hold water. It would take a VERY LONG time on a lot of systems (my iBook for example). The cost of an extra disc isn't that much anyway.

    IMHO, I don't think that there will be a fully 64-bit native implementation of OS X in Panther. I don't even think 10.4 will be fully 64-bit native, and 10.5 will finally come close. Remember, not even Mac OS 9 is completely PowerPC native. I expect we won't see a fully 64-bit native version of OS X until the third OS update after Panther (10.6 if Apple never releases OS X 11). I think there's too much life left in the G3 and G4 processors for consumer solutions.

    That said, I would love to be proven wrong.
     
  11. Lanbrown macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2003
    #12
    They may eventually get to two separate kernels, one 64-bit and the other 32-bit and some software in 32 and 64. The rest will probably remain 32-bit until the G4 and G3 are no longer supported. Look at Sun, they still support 10 year old systems. Just recently some of their systems can only boot in 64-bit.
     
  12. whocares macrumors 65816

    whocares

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2002
    Location:
    :noitаɔo˩
    #13
    Dunno if I got this right but:
    *a 32 bit processor can adress 2^32 Bytes of memory = 4,294,967,296 to be picky
    *a 64 bit processor should theoretically be able to acces 2^64 Bytes of memory which is a massive load of RAM...
    *if the piece of code of the OS that deals with RAM access is 64 bit, then any 64 bit program should be able to address >4GB on a G5. The whole OS doesn't have to be 64 bit.

    Take with a pinch of salt, and pls correct me if I'm wrong
     
  13. stoid macrumors 601

    stoid

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2002
    Location:
    So long, and thanks for all the fish!
    #14
    I can see it now. Steve walking out with a cane in one hand, a bottle of Evian in the other saying, "Today we'd like to demonstrate Mac OS 10.25 Felix otherwise known as finally-the-64-bit-OS-you've-been-waiting-20-years-for"

    The crowd goes wild!
     
  14. LimeLite macrumors 6502a

    LimeLite

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2003
    Location:
    Los Angeles, Ca
    #15
    You guys are failing to understand that it's not necessary for the whole OS to be 64-bit compatible. The G5 can run both 64-bit and 32-bit apps natively, so while the OS won't be fully 64-bit, applications can be, and can take full advantage of the chip, regardless of the OS.

    I guess I just don't understand what tasks require the whole OS to be 64-bit right away. There is some 64-bit code already in Panther, and it's much better to have an OS that can still run on a lot of computers. Even if 10.5 was full 64-bit, assuming it comes out in 2 years, it makes any computers over 2 years old un-upgradeable. That's leaving a lot of people behind.

    However, having a 32-bit OS with code optimized for 64-bit makes it possible to run on more computers and still take advantage of 64-bits.

    Summary: There's no real need for the OS to be completely 64-bit any time soon at all.
     
  15. LimeLite macrumors 6502a

    LimeLite

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2003
    Location:
    Los Angeles, Ca
    #16
    btw, did it take you 3 months to decide what you wanted to say, or what? :)
     
  16. Ptitboul macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2003
    #17
    You may look at what Sun did for Solaris. They began to introduce 64-bit support in SunOS 5.5, but SunOS 5.7 is the first version that can really run full 64-bit applications. However, all Solaris applications still have to choose between being 32-bit or 64-bit, and most are 32-bit. The reason is that 64-bit pointers take twice the memory needed for 32-bit pointers, therefore 32-bit is better for applications that you know they will not use more than 2Gb of memory.
    For example /usr/bin/ls is a "ELF 32-bit MSB executable SPARC" while /usr/bin/sparcv9/ls is a "ELF 64-bit MSB executable SPARCV9".

    My guess is that Panther has the same type of 64-bit support as SunOS 5.6 (which dates back to Aug. 97 http://www.ocf.berkeley.edu/solaris/versions/).
     
  17. bousozoku Moderator emeritus

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2002
    Location:
    Gone but not forgotten.
    #18
    Actually, a 32-bit processor could have access to more than 4 GB of RAM, if it had more than 32-bits of address lines. Remember the 68000? It could get 16-bits at a time from memory but it had 32-bit instructions and could access 24-bits of RAM.

    The PPC970 has a bridge mode which allows it to run 32-bit operating systems due to some 64-bit startup code. Applications written for the processor do not need to limit themselves to the constraints of the G4. If a PPC970-enhanced application wants 7 GB of RAM, it can access it, as long as the operating system acknowledges that it's available, of course.

    When the big machine 64-bit changeover started to occur in the mid-1990s, there was only one machine which had an operating system compatible with all aspects of 64-bit-ness: IBM OS/400. The others (UNIX and mainframes) would claim one piece of 64-bit-ness or another, such as a 64-bit file system--room for huge files, for instance. It took many years for them to complete the transition.

    Apple will probably complete the work in much less time, but finish it in typical staggered fashion. Mac OS X Server should be switched to 64-bit all at once and not look back though.
     

Share This Page