(ia64) Itanium{1..2} Users?

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shutitalldown
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(ia64) Itanium{1..2} Users?

Unread postby shutitalldown » Thu Mar 29, 2018 5:14 am

A bunch of Itanium's bricks got offered to my department and it sounds suspiciously too cheap.

In fact, I am working on i960 and i860 processors offered by them, and they are poop architectures, although, by reading their manuals, they look the last attempt by Intel to replace the aging x86 architecture (i960 is used for embedded stuff, instead of using 80186 embedded processor) :roll:

I heard SGI and HP replaced their own high-end processors with Itanium out of the expectation that it would bring a revolution in performance. Facts are: the first-generation was an epic flop, while with the release of the Itanium2 core in late 2002, the ratio performance/electricity was better.

HP is the last major manufacturer of Itanium-based workstations, e.g. the ZX2000 and ZX6000 (some of them got offered to my department), and Linux is claimed to be "not so bad".

How "not so bad?" It needs to be clarified before I decide to put my effort into that stuff.

Thus, If any Itanium users here: what is your experience, with which Itanium2-workstation? and on which OS?
In case of Linux, with which distro? { SUSE, Debian, Red-HAT, RHEL, CentOS, ... }
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shutitalldown
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Re: (ia64) Itanium{1..2} Users?

Unread postby shutitalldown » Fri Mar 30, 2018 11:08 am

Demystifying the meaning of "not so bad": I guess it's similar to hppa and alpha: no new chips but existing ones work ok and have basic toolchain support. But, judging buy logs, ia64 seems to have no huge stablereq backlog in its bug list, thus I'd say ia64 "mostly" works.

Anyway, reading newsletters, dudes at Intel have no plans to produce new ia64 chips, and they did not already for a long time, this means extinction, so the question is now when? software support deteriorates enough.
I am tattooed in reverse, cause if you break rules you don't know where it leads.
But, say, all the venus in furs are so manically depressed and manically dressed.

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jan-jaap
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Re: (ia64) Itanium{1..2} Users?

Unread postby jan-jaap » Fri Mar 30, 2018 12:23 pm

shutitalldown wrote:Anyway, reading newsletters, dudes at Intel have no plans to produce new ia64 chips, and they did not already for a long time, this means extinction, so the question is now when? software support deteriorates enough.

Most Linux distributions dropped IA64 years ago. Last IA64 RedHat release was RHEL 5.x (they're at 7.x now), Debian dropped it from their list of official ports after Debian 8, SuSE held out the longest (SLES 11, currently they're at SLES 12).

Unless you're looking for a tinkerbox, and are willing (and capable) of supporting it entirely by yourself, you should stay far away from IA64. It is a dead end.

heavyfuel
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Re: (ia64) Itanium{1..2} Users?

Unread postby heavyfuel » Thu Apr 12, 2018 1:43 pm

I have no experience on Itanium systems (although I might like to :D) but as far as I know the only Linux distro that has not announced the end of official IA-64 support is Gentoo.

There's an unofficial Debian port for IA-64. Debian 7 was apparently the last official release to support IA-64 and its long-term support ends very soon.

RHEL 5 and SLES 11 should be supported to the 2020s.

FreeBSD 10 should be supported until autumn 2018. NetBSD is developing an IA-64 port.

I'm not sure about other operating systems. At least some Windows server editions work on IA-64.

MrWeedster
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Re: (ia64) Itanium{1..2} Users?

Unread postby MrWeedster » Sat Apr 14, 2018 4:50 am

I have a prism with dual itaniums here.
A lot of pita to get it up and running. Well at least for that specific machine you have to have SLES9 SP3 with the additional SGI stuff (ProPack) to get a running xserver for GUI. I put these on archive.org if anyone is in need.
I also experimented with debian 5 and 6. Both are running pretty well, but no GUI. To get 6 running you have to install 5 first and make an upgrade.

Windows IA64 doesnt work, neither FreeBSD. But that isnt because of IA64, its because they lack support of the sgiioc4. RHEL 5 does also work, but no gui either.
I heard you have more luck with the HP IA64s - They seem to work better with several distros.


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