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Gentoo Does An x32 Stage 3 Release Candidate

Operating Systems

Published on 07 June 2012 07:11 AM EDT
Written by Michael Larabel in Operating Systems
20 Comments

Gentoo is one of the first Linux distributions to release a packaged installation for the Linux x32 architecture.

Linux x32 is the effort for a native 32-bit ABI for Intel/AMD x86_64 systems but where 32-bit pointers are used to reduce the memory footprint while still allowing for x32 programs to take advantage of the rest of the 64-bit benefits. There's x32 support within the Linux kernel, GCC, glibc, binutils, and even LLVM/Clang.

There's build instructions from the x32-abi web-site for those wishing to manually begin building out x32 ABI support, but to date there hasn't been any major distributions beginning to ship an x32 flavor. Ubuntu does have x32 plans, but for now it's all talk.

Meanwhile, Mike Frysinger of Gentoo has released an initial x32 release candidate of a Gentoo Stage 3 installation for x32. The x32 ABI is the default while still bundling support for the x86 and amd64 ABIs. This RC is using glibc 2.15 with the support back-ported rather than the fully-supported glibc 2.16, but with the ABI compatibility, the upgrade should go smooth. "Once glibc-2.16 is released upstream, we should have x32 stages released alongside the existing x86/amd64 stages."

More information in this gentoo-devel mailing list post.

About The Author
Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the web-site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience and being the largest web-site devoted to Linux hardware reviews, particularly for products relevant to Linux gamers and enthusiasts but also commonly reviewing servers/workstations and embedded Linux devices. Michael has written more than 10,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics hardware drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated testing software. He can be followed via and or contacted via .
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