[Haifux] Running 32 bit applications (Firefox?) on 64 bit machines

Nadav Har'El nyh at math.technion.ac.il
Mon Aug 22 11:07:12 MSD 2011

On Sun, Aug 21, 2011, Tzafrir Cohen wrote about "Re: [Haifux] Running 32 bit applications (Firefox?) on 64 bit?machines":
> Another thing I forgot:
> Try building Firefox (with debug information and such). IIRC you'll need
> more than 4GB of memory space. And this is far from being the only
> program.

I'm curious - why is that?

In the old days, when men were men and computers had small memories,
programmers actually went into great lengths to make sure that the algorithms
and data structures which they used did not assume that everything can fit
in memory. I remember my great pride in Unix's "vi" which could edit a
file far larger than RAM (heck, even 1 MB used to be larger than RAM!),
while Windows' notepad insisted to stick the whole file in RAM and thrash
like crazy.

I can only regret that Firefox reached 4 GB of code size (!?), but it's
an even bigger shame if the tool chain - gcc or ld or whatever - cannot work
well without holding all that stuff in RAM concurrently.


Nadav Har'El                        |          Monday, Aug 22 2011, 22 Av 5771
nyh at math.technion.ac.il             |-----------------------------------------
Phone +972-523-790466, ICQ 13349191 |Microchips: what's left at the bottom of
http://nadav.harel.org.il           |the bag when it reaches you.

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