Linux Developers Still Working To Retire Intel Itanium/IA-64 Support

Written by Michael Larabel in Intel on 12 May 2023 at 11:00 AM EDT. 9 Comments
Back in February was a patch series proposed retiring the Intel Itanium (IA-64) architecture support from the Linux kernel. That removal has yet to take place in Linux Git but it's still being talked about and user-space developers are also eager as it would mean being able to clear out Itanium user-space code too.

Discussions over dropping the Intel Itanium support from the Linux kernel sort of stalled but were restarted today. This follows the Itanium kernel code being orphaned in 2021, the GCC compiler deprecated IA-64, and due to the lack of Itanium users also running new kernel versions means the kernel code can easily get busted and go unnoticed for extended periods of time.

There's clearly a desire by upstream kernel maintainers to get rid of the Itanium code given the lack of users and no one willing to commit to seriously maintaining the IA-64 code.

Following a mailing list thread suggesting the GRUB bootloader could drop IA-64 support, it was suggested that it be better coordinated and follow the Linux kernel dropping its Itanium support. Some have suggested first raising the issue more widely to confirm that there are no active users and developers left that are concerned about upstream support in the Linux kernel and related user-space open-source projects for Itanium.

Intel Itanium logo

So hopefully that will happen soon and then open-source developers can begin taking the lead of Linux kernel developers and follow with clearing out the Itanium code to reduce the maintenance burden across the various projects with architecture-specific code for IA-64.
Related News
About The Author
Michael Larabel

Michael Larabel is the principal author of and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 20,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter, LinkedIn, or contacted via

Popular News This Week