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Ubuntu 12.04 Still Trying For 64-bit By Default

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  • #11
    Originally posted by DanL View Post
    I think the whole 64-bit RAM thing is overblown. Unless you're already maxing out RAM or near it, I wouldn't worry about it. Running 64-bit Kubuntu (not an efficient distro or DE) with Kwin effects, Firefox, Tbird, and Synaptic open, I'm only using 800MB. It's much less on my main install (Debian sid/xfce). That said, I don't think I'd reinstall just to move to 64-bit unless I was doing something that really benefitted from it (running VM's, lots of encoding, big GIMP images, etc.).
    Try rebooting less.
     ~ % free -m
                 total       used       free     shared    buffers     cached
    Mem:          7851       7234        616          0        416       3810
    -/+ buffers/cache:       3007       4843
    Swap:            0          0          0


    • #12
      Originally posted by ChrisXY View Post
      Try rebooting less.
      No. I'm running a desktop (not a server) that reboots once every few days since Debian (apto)sid rapidly provides kernel updates. What do you have running that uses 3GB?


      • #13
        Originally posted by pingufunkybeat View Post
        There are still distros which use 32 bits by default?
        Most of the major ones do, as far as I can tell (unless they're just detecting what the visiting browser is running). Fedora, Ubuntu, OpenSUSE - all of them offer 32-bit as the default download option when I visit their sites. Arch doesn't seem to have a default - they just offer both on the same page.


        • #14
          Originally posted by DanL View Post
          No. I'm running a desktop (not a server) that reboots once every few days since Debian (apto)sid rapidly provides kernel updates. What do you have running that uses 3GB?
          I'm running a notebook with archlinux. Mesa git and rc kernel of course. Suspend to ram is my friend. Until the next kernel update comes. Library updates should pretty much be painless by "telinit 1" and then "telinit 5" without even clearing the caches. Maybe I will look how kexec works too.

          Intellij and firefox seem to use the most memory.


          • #15
            Originally posted by cl333r View Post
            I've never used any desktop 32 bit (or even 64 bit) app that would require over 4GB, not even close, those which did did so because of memory leaks and/or bad programmers.
            A few years ago I had a job in 3D architecture visualization and I remember trying to render a scene at something like 8000x2500px, anti-aliasing, global illumination, computed geometry and lots of detail and that was a 5.3GB of RAM render. It was the most intensive one I did and it was a swapping hell because the computer only had 4GB of ram... Also, having lots of open drawings on Inkscape each with lots of lines and effects also uses a substantial amount of RAM. There are many uses for large amounts of RAM.


            • #16
              Originally posted by pingufunkybeat View Post
              When was the last 32-bit only x86 chip released?
              The Vortex86MX+ from DM&P (aka Xcore86+ when sold by NorhTec, which sells thin clients, netbooks & low power home servers based on it) was released at the end of last year, so is about half a year old...

              (Also, this chip is officially only i586 compatible, so obviously there is no PAE and other fancy stuff either...)
              Last edited by JanC; 04-18-2012, 02:59 PM.


              • #17
                By all means yes

                People using older hardware should switch desktops anyway, unity/gnome3/kde4 are heavy weight. Someone with a processor too old to support 64 bits should switch to Xubuntu or Lubuntu, also to avoid the non pae issues.

                Yes it should be the default. Been using 64 bits for 5 years don't see the reason not to unless your hardware can't handle it, which means an old p4 or such which are better served by a light desktop.


                • #18
                  Agreed. I've been using 64-bit for several years now, and it's been completely painless for the last few releases. There's also been some benchmarks only a few weeks ago which showed that 64-bit was faster than 32-bit in several areas, so there's other benefits aside from support for more memory. The biggest difference, as far as I see it is going to be:

                  * Download Ubuntu 11.10 32-bit (recommended)
                  * Download Ubuntu 11.10 64-bit

                  will be changed to

                  * Download Ubuntu 12.04 64-bit (recommended)
                  * Download Ubuntu 12.04 32-bit

                  The 32-bit version isn't going anywhere, it's simply not the recommended option anymore.


                  • #19
                    Originally posted by devius View Post
                    There are many uses for large amounts of RAM.
                    A friend of mine is doing heavy computer vision stuff with Matlab. Recently he ran out of memory on 32-bit Windows. Luckily for him, the /3GB boot option gave enough virtual memory to complete his processing but bigger images would require even more memory. Running the 32-bit version under 64-bit OS (Windows or Linux) would give him 4GB of virtual address space. So one could say that switching to 64-bit OS protects your investment because you won't have to buy a new 64-bit version of the application. Of course, on Windows you have to check if the application supports more than 2GB virtual address space - it's a flag in the PE file format, but 32-bit Linux apps should be fine because the default memory split has been 3G/1G for quite some time, and consequently no one has been stupid enough to use the most significant bit of the pointers for flags.