Oracle Posts SPARC M8 Patches For GCC
Written by Michael Larabel in Oracle on 5 July 2017 at 10:45 AM EDT. 3 Comments
It looks like the SPARC M8 processor will end up getting released as an Oracle engineer today posted patches implementing support for the M8 with GCC.

The future of SPARC has been in question for a while now since layoffs at Oracle, the future of Solaris also looking rather bleak, and M8+ references no longer being on the company's road-map. There has been mixed reports whether the SPARC M8 and M9 designs have been canned, but with Oracle now submitting GCC compiler patches for the M8, at least that still appears to be happening.

The SPARC M8 processor implements the Oracle SPARC Architecture 2017 and the GCC patches have been bootstrapped under Solaris. The patches make note of new instructions added to SPARC 2017: dictionary unpack, partitioned compare with shifted result, unsigned partitioned compare with shifted result, partitioned dual-equal compare with shifted result, and partitioned unsigned range compare with shifted result.

It will be interesting to see how the M8 compares to the SPARC M7 that is based on their 2015 architecture and is clocked up to 4133MHz, up to 256 threads, and is manufactured on a 20nm process. With the GCC M8 patches now public, perhaps Oracle's official release announcement isn't too far out.

More details in the patch series. With the patches the new support is exposed via -mcpu=m8 and -mtune=m8.
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