On Thu, Sep 16, 2004 at 11:39:16AM +1200, Oliver Jones wrote:
> I've got the i386 iso on the way, should have
it in an hour or so,
> will let people know how it goes.
You know this is a pet peeve of mine. I wish more
their apps as at least i586 binaries. No one (or nearly no one) would
attempt to use a modern distro on a i386 anymore. Even 486 systems will
be hard to come by now.
There are different levels of optimisations gcc can do.
Eg "gcc -march=i386 -mcpu=athlon-tbird ..." will generate machine
instructions that will run on all x86-compatible chips i386 and up,
but is optimised for that particular type of chip.
Similarly, 2.6 linux kernels have an option to only use generic i386
instructions, regardless of *which* particular sequence of instructions
it determines is optimal for your particular cpu.
Anyway, I've seen it suggested that compiling the kernel and the c library
for your particular machine and leaving all the other libraries/applications
as generic i386 will make a small amount of difference, and optimising
everything else won't make that much difference on top of that.
Don't have any links or proof to back that up though :p
Just 'cos a distro is labelled as 'i386' doesn't mean it doesn't have
optimisations for more recent processors in it, just that only
use machine instructions that the i386 has.