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Innocent Devil

Why x64 ?

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Microsoft named the 64 bit OS as Windows XP x64 or Windows Server 2003 x64

so the application developers too

where x64 come from ?

the 32 bit intel Arch. is generally termed as "x86"

But the newer 64 bit Arch is an extension to the same x86 arch & can run x86 arch apps.

comparing x86 & x64 it seems to be a degradation :D ,isn't it ?

so the 64 bit arch should be named "x86-64" bcoz it is an extension to x86

Where did th 86 go? :unsure:

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The x86 definition of processors refers to the instruction sets used by commonplace CPUs (Pentium4, Athlon, and variants). It's meant to be an extension of the old 86, 286, 386, and 486 processors.

For a while, the original Pentium processor was dubbed the 586, but Intel wanted a stronger marketing platform, and therefore dubbed their new processor the Intel Pentium.

You're entirely correct about the 64-bit architechture being an extension upon the existing x86 platform, and it is infact called x86-64 (Many 64-bit Linux distros are labeled with this).

My guess is that the x86 was simply dropped since most consumers don't really know the history of processors.

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Nope... AMD still uses the x86-64 instruction set. Look at any CPU-Z screenshot from an Athlon64 CPU.

All "common" CPUs (any you would typically find in a home computer) are based on the x86 instruction set. The 64-bit processors have an extended version of x86 to allow for 64-bit processing.

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How can the architecture be the same if it is different. Does that mean it will run on the same processors built for x32?

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The architechture is different for 64-bit processors. That's what makes it a 64-bit processor... :P

What you're probably thinking of is the fact that the 64-bit architecture is backwards compatible, meaning that a processor that can handle the x86-64 instructions can also handle x86 instructions.

The instructions are the software, the architecture is the hardware. Simply put, the old software can run on new hardware, but not the other way around.

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For a while, the original Pentium processor was dubbed the 586, but Intel wanted a stronger marketing platform, and therefore dubbed their new processor the Intel Pentium.

Nope. Don't mean to sound like a prick or anything, but I still have one of these. The 586 was basically a 486 on steroids, it had a few extra extensions, and was usually clocked slightly faster (mine's 100MHz, but then again, I had a 150MHz 486). Most of the 586s were actually manufactured by IBM or Cyrix (Cyrix having since been bought out by Via), and Cyrix called them officially the 5x86, this is what I have. The Pentium and K5/6 lines were actually known (to those who actually gave a ****) as the 686s (and the Cyrix MII was the 6x86), and since then, the actual numbering has been dropped in favor of the generic "x86", since AMD and Intel have split so greatly in the architecture of their CPUs, and the other companies (Evergreen, IBM, Cyrix, and many others) have moved on to other markets or closed their doors.

So, there's your history lesson for today ;)

Edited by amp_man

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