i386 version in future ?

Mehmet Erol Sanliturk m.e.sanliturk at gmail.com
Tue Sep 27 15:33:36 UTC 2016

On Tue, Sep 27, 2016 at 4:41 AM, Ralf Mardorf via freebsd-questions <
freebsd-questions at freebsd.org> wrote:

> On Tue, 27 Sep 2016 10:53:58 +0000, Thomas Mueller wrote:
> >Some Linux distributions have also quit i386.
> Perhaps, but non of the major distros I know. Since a long time ago
> Ubuntu 32 bit kernels by default have PAE enabled, so if a non-PAE
> kernel should be required, the user needs to build it. Ubuntu will drop
> 32 bit architecture support in a few years for their "normal" ISOs and
> repositories, but there still will be ports to get regular 32 bit
> architecture packages, let alone that 32 bit architecture won't be
> dropped for Ubuntu snaps. Arch will continue 32 bit architecture, but
> perhaps enable SSE2 for some packages, that don't have it enabled now.
> Note, Arch has got a FreeBSD alike build system, ABS, so users could
> easily build packages with SSE2 disabled.
> Regards,
> Ralf
> _______________________________________________

Previously , I was also thinking that dropping i386 would be useful to
divert efforts to improve amd64 a little more .

Now , I am thinking that dropping i386 is not so much useful because

- 64 bit CPU will consume more power than only 32 bit  CPU . If a job can
be processed by a 32 bit CPU , it is not necessary to use a 64 bit CPU .
This will reduce size of CPU , and for small devices means less power .

- FreeBSD is a "basic" operating system , in the sense that it is used in
many diverse areas . To support very small and power efficient 32 bit
processors , FreeBSD has primary importance .

- Distributions based on FreeBSD , may decide to drop i386 , and I support
their decisions because they are targeting a special area such as Intel
like processor using desktops . In that case , trying to support i386 is
only a waste of resources .

Even a distribution may only support i386 or only another 32 bit CPU when
its target does not include 64 bit . In that case also trying generate a 64
bit distribution obviously will be useless  for them .

For reasons such as above supporting i386 ( or 32 bit ) distributions by
FreeBSD will be useful up to disappearing of i386 like processors from the
market .

Thank you very much .

Mehmet Erol Sanliturk

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