_amd64?


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Thread: _amd64?

  1. #1
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    _amd64?

    Why do many Linux distros still refer to the 64-bit versions as amd64? It's not as if it isn't already confusing and intimidating enough for first-time Linux users.

    Most people know whether they have an AMD or Intel chip in their computer. If somebody has an Intel chip, it is counterintuitive to see "amd64" in the file name of the download.

    Why not x86_64?

  2. #2
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    I think it might be because AMD was first to release their 64 bit CPUs. So several of the Linux distros started creating 64 bit releases for the "amd64" chip. The name just stuck, even after Intel had released 64 bit architectures.

    That's my guess anyway.
    "The author of that poem is either Homer or, if not Homer, somebody else of the same name."

  3. #3
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    I think the name refers to the instruction set of the architecture. Our 32-bit chips are called i-x86 from either manufacturer and the 64-bit chips both use AMD64 instructions.
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  4. #4
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    Check this out:

    http://jetteroheller.wordpress.com/2...d-intel-em64t/

    I got this from a google search: "intel amd64"

    Edit: Oops, I just realized that site is some scientology thing. I am not affiliated with that in any way.

    Here's some info from wikipedia:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/X86-64
    Last edited by bs_texas; 12-13-2009 at 06:43 PM.
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  5. #5
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    If I remember correctly, when 64-bit chips started hitting the desktop market AMD and Intel introduced separate 64-bit instruction sets. AMD's was an extension of the previous 32-bit x86 set, but Intel's was a complete revamp (probably related to their Xeon instruction set) not bogged down with any legacy remnants. Initially there were two 64-bit options for a standard desktop amd64 and IA64 for AMD's and Intel's respective instruction sets. When the market went with amd64 instructions for easier backwards compatibility, Intel quickly switched.

  6. #6
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    Pafnoutios, your close the original Intel 64 instruction set was the for the Itanium line.

  7. #7
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    I think the issue I'm trying to get at is that it is not user friendly for somebody who is new to Linux. It seems to me that it is completely unnecessary to specify "amd" in the filename.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by undoIT View Post
    I think the issue I'm trying to get at is that it is not user friendly for somebody who is new to Linux. It seems to me that it is completely unnecessary to specify "amd" in the filename.
    I totally agree with you....as a protest I avoid downloading anything that includes the letters "A,M,D" in the filename.
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  9. #9
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    There's this:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IA64

    Incidentally 'friendly' may not be a unqualified good obviously.

    While in this case your complaint may well be justified, the term friendly may be used to de-skill jobs - that way more people compete for the job and wages are forced down - or it may mean: "assume the user is a cretin and ignore them" - linux allows a choice of being in control (unfriendly) and friendly (loosing some control).

    Sponsored message: Debian is sort of half way along the spectrum.
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