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Re: amd64 and dpkg and so

On Wednesday 27 August 2003 08:31 pm, marc.miller@amd.com wrote:
> To clarify, I (being me, and not necessarily AMD) still love the 32/64
> hybrid idea, and if "doogie" is the gatekeeper here, I'm willing to
> approach him myself to see if there's something AMD can do to make him
> more flexible on this issue.  Given the pent-up demand for an AMD64 port
> of Debian, I (speaking as AMD for a moment) would rather see a pure
> 64-bit port than none at all.

I'd go one step further and say that the 32/64 hybrid Opteron system may be 
required.  At work I occaisionally deal with rather picky closed-source 
software.  Library dependencies may require that I install 32-bit versions 
of some libs, as well as their 64-bit version.

I don't see a pure 64-bit port as that useful; there's a lot of software 
that I just don't need rebuilt (apache, for example).  Will /bin/ls run 
faster if it's built 64-bit native?  Does anyone care?  In my opinion, a 
pure 64-bit port isn't a good use of time and space (though it is a swift 
way to check the "we support Opteron box", if such marketroid things matter 
in Debian technical circles).

Why not extend what's currently done for sparc64?  Yes, admittedly it's a 
bit of a hack.  However, it means I can install both the 32-bit and the 
64-bit version of a library side by side.  Granted, building the 
libfoo-amd64 package may be a bit of extra work; it's possible files would 
conflict with the 32-bit version.  However, the 64-bit porting could be 
done on a package-by-package basis, as needed.

These extra -amd64 packages could be kept in a separate apt archive 
initially, until proper testing can be done and a place found in the main 
archives.  All that would really be required initially would be an 
Opteron-aware installer, kernel, glibc, binutils, and compilers.  Sure, 
this wouldn't be ready for sarge, but it'd be a quick add-on that could 
work fairly well.  Heck, I might even be able to convince my boss to let me 
put a few machines and interns on such a project.

Opinions?  Flames?  Imported cheeses?

Mike Shuey

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