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AMD Offers More 64-bit Development Tools

AMD added another member to its roster of developers’ tools for its forthcoming 64-bit processor, codenamed “Hammer.” Today, Advanced Micro Devices Corp. said that it was partnering with Virtutech AB to create Virtuhammer, a Hammer emulator for Windows 2000 and Linux.

The Hammer processor will use AMD’s x86-64 instruction set. Unlike Intel’s IA-64 instruction set, it will be completely compatible with the x86 legacy instruction set introduced in 1978. However, Hammer will introduce two extensions, long mode and register extensions.

AMD has offered developers a number of options to prepare for the new instructions. It released the instruction set specifications to developers in August, 2000 then offered x86-64 emulator called SimNow! in October. AMD later partnered with Transmeta Corp. to ship test machines with Transmeta’s code-morphing “Crusoe” processor.

Today’s announcement is a similar development. Virtutech, a developer of virtual machines and emulators, will create a high-performance Hammer simulator, so developers can test code for the Hammer processor before it is released. AMD says Hammer will hit the market in the first half of 2002. – Christopher McConnell

About the Author

Scott Bekker is editor in chief of Redmond Channel Partner magazine.

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