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PowerPC 40x Processor Support To Be Dropped From The Linux Kernel

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  • #11
    Originally posted by dragorth View Post

    That was one use case. However, Amiga OS 4+ also runs on the PPC as the main CPU, as well as an early version of MorphOS, if I remember correctly.
    There are also dedicated higher-end Amiga-systems, the X5000/20 and /40, with a *shock* dual- or *even greater shock* quad-core CPU! P5020 and P5040. We're getting off topic, though, but to sort of stay on it, there was one using the PPC 460, which is not scheduled for removal (yet).

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    • #12
      Originally posted by Developer12 View Post
      Still pretty unique. Not a lot that will let you just freely record over the air transmissions anymore.
      All newer set-top-boxes my parents had allowed recording, rewinding and "Watch one thing, record another for later". The only thing missing is that you can't transfer it to the PC due to all the encryption stuff that was introduced some years ago (at least for HD stuff). But sure this may depend on the country someone lives in.

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      • #13
        Originally posted by stesmi View Post

        There are also dedicated higher-end Amiga-systems, the X5000/20 and /40, with a *shock* dual- or *even greater shock* quad-core CPU! P5020 and P5040. We're getting off topic, though, but to sort of stay on it, there was one using the PPC 460, which is not scheduled for removal (yet).
        Not to mention the current state is to use some off the shelf cards of today with PPC hardware and use those with the Amiga. There is an Open Source project somewhere of this.

        So, this isn't off topic, per say. Linux is still supporting those Amiga systems. It would be nice to be able to boot Linux directly on the PPC systems, rather than the m68K, because some of the PPC CPUs in the Open Source Project go up to 800Mhz, which is much faster than the stock 100Mhz max of the m68k.

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        • #14
          Originally posted by -MacNuke- View Post

          All newer set-top-boxes my parents had allowed recording, rewinding and "Watch one thing, record another for later". The only thing missing is that you can't transfer it to the PC due to all the encryption stuff that was introduced some years ago (at least for HD stuff). But sure this may depend on the country someone lives in.
          Not being able to transfer it to the PC is the one thing that should be tipping you off. "freely" was the operative word.

          The idea that you can "record" and "rewind" is a mirage. Of course you can rewind, it's a streaming service dressed up like a cable package. A lot of devices do the "recording" cloud-side, where hitting record merely asks the company to let you stream it later. For the few times you can save to a USB, it's encrypted.

          It's the illusion of a better product. Once upon a time we all had VCRs that could record any show onto a tape we could play on any device, from now until the end of time. For a brief period those linux OSs restored that ability.

          Now anything can and will be yanked with the next software update, no matter how much you pay monthly.

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          • #15
            I think NASA still uses PowerPC, they have to use hardware that's over 20 years old because low power and precision matters more in space. If your CPU is 75w in space, have fun dissipating that heat. They also need protection from cosmic rays and go with hardware rated to be space worthy.

            Though I think NASA is moving away from memory unsafe OSes. So I don't think Linux is space worthy for critical systems anymore. (fine for an Astronaut's laptop) Though I think there should be efforts in processing safe hardware. The damn branch predictors.

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            • #16
              Aren't this the hard cores inside the Virtex 2 pro?

              It is a pity that we drop support for it

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              • #17
                Originally posted by Developer12 View Post
                Now anything can and will be yanked with the next software update, no matter how much you pay monthly.
                I am not talking about streaming services. I am talking about FreeTV OTA broadcasts.

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                • #18
                  Originally posted by commodore256 View Post
                  I think NASA still uses PowerPC, they have to use hardware that's over 20 years old because low power and precision matters more in space. If your CPU is 75w in space, have fun dissipating that heat. They also need protection from cosmic rays and go with hardware rated to be space worthy.
                  That's the RAD750, a rad-hardened version of the PowerPC 750. It's 20 years old mainly because it's such a tiny market that all the NRE costs are amortized over a very small number of systems, so as long as it's workable it makes sense to avoid the enormous cost of developing a new platform. Per wiki list price for a RAD750 board is around $200k.

                  A year or so(?) ago there was some announcement of a NASA program to make a rad-hardened RISC-V platform as the follow-on to RAD750. Not sure about the current status of that project.

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                  • #19
                    Originally posted by commodore256 View Post
                    I think NASA still uses PowerPC, they have to use hardware that's over 20 years old because low power and precision matters more in space. If your CPU is 75w in space, have fun dissipating that heat. They also need protection from cosmic rays and go with hardware rated to be space worthy.
                    What you're referring to is the is the BAE RAD750, a radiation-hardened PowerPC 750, which is a few generations newer than what's being retired here. Apple called it the "G3" and used it across their late 90s model range in iMacs, iBooks, PowerBooks and PowerMacs. Nintendo also used it in the Gamecube, Wii and a heavily updated variant in the WiiU.

                    I personally figured they'd have moved onto something slightly higher end with the complexity of sensors and the amount of data they produce, but apparently both the Perseverance Mars rover (launched in 2020) and the James Web Space Telescope (launched in 2021) still use them. I probably figured wrong and that most of the complex and heavier computational load from running those sensors is handled by DSPs closer to them. The fact that the Hubble Space Telescope originally ran on something so slow it got a 20x performance boost when it got upgraded to effectively a radiation hardened i486 should have made that obvious.

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                    • #20
                      Originally posted by dragorth View Post
                      So, this isn't off topic, per say. Linux is still supporting those Amiga systems. It would be nice to be able to boot Linux directly on the PPC systems, rather than the m68K, because some of the PPC CPUs in the Open Source Project go up to 800Mhz, which is much faster than the stock 100Mhz max of the m68k.
                      It is but don't forget that clock cycles is not everything.. For example a 6510, 68000, PPC460, sx386 and a z80 for that matter would be vastly different if they all was running at 1Mhz for example (and of course the code would be different as well).

                      http://www.dirtcellar.net

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