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Microsoft Windows Technology

Microsoft Leaks Details of 128-bit Windows 8 581

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the still-haven't-got-32-bits-right dept.
Barence writes "Microsoft is planning to make Windows 8 a 128-bit operating system, according to details leaked from the software giant's Research department. The discovery came to light after Microsoft Research employee Robert Morgan carelessly left details of his work on the social-networking site LinkedIn. His page read: 'Working in high-security department for research and development involving strategic planning for medium and long-term projects. Research & Development projects including 128-bit architecture compatibility with the Windows 8 kernel and Windows 9 project plan. Forming relationships with major partners: Intel, AMD, HP and IBM.' It has since been removed."
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Microsoft Leaks Details of 128-bit Windows 8

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  • by Luyseyal (3154) <swatersNO@SPAMluy.info> on Thursday October 08, 2009 @11:43AM (#29681825) Homepage

    Who needs 128? I haven't even used all 64 of my current bits yet.

    -l

    • Yeah, well I'm working on an OS that'll be 129 bits!

    • by TheRaven64 (641858) on Thursday October 08, 2009 @12:03PM (#29682119) Journal
      Neither has AMD or Intel. Most 64-bit processors provide 40 or 48 bits of address space; they ignore the other two or three bytes of the address (often they support a larger virtual address space than physical, but even then it's usually less than 64-bit). I've yet to see a consumer-grade machine with more RAM than PAE (36-bit addressing) could address. That said, memory is not the only place where the number of bits is important. Hard drives are typically addressed by 512-byte blocks, so 32 bits gives you 2TB, which is a single disk these days. 64 bits gives you 8ZB, which is quite a lot, but it's not a completely unreasonable amount; some people are going to find that constraining in the next few years, which is why ZFS uses 128 bits. It's not that 128 bits are necessary, so much that 65 bits are and 128 is the most computationally-convenient size after 128. Making sure everything in the kernel supports 128-bit filesystem offsets is an important for long-term project.

      If we start using PCRAM then we are likely to want to use byte-addressable filesystems, rather than keep relying on blocks, which reduces the size you can address with 64 bits to 16EB, which is a lot less; there are almost certainly already people with datasets larger than this. Because PCRAM has similar characteristics to DRAM, the most convenient way of addressing it is likely to be mapping it directly into the CPU's address space, rather than treating it as a device. You could use paging tricks and only map accessed files, but having two MMUs doesn't make life very simple for operating system writers, so ideally you're going to want to have all of your persistent storage in your address space (like MULTICS: everything old is new again). If you do this, then you may well want to have more than a 64-bit address space within ten years. And, when I say 'you' I mean 'companies with a lot of spare money to spend on IT infrastructure'.

    • by Kjella (173770) on Thursday October 08, 2009 @12:08PM (#29682175) Homepage

      With that uid, it's because your pr0n is ASCII art.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by gr8_phk (621180)
      When I had a computer with 16K of memory and the new 32bit processors were becoming available, 4Gig seemed unimaginable. Now I have 1GB in my old system and imagine the next will have a bit more - if only because DDR2 & DDR3 seem to come in larger module sizes. Normally I don't see a need for 64 bit addressing, but I have actually thought about using 48bit or larger addresses for a large sparse data structure. If you've got a sparse binary tree for example, you could lay it out mathematically and waste
  • 128 bit? (Score:5, Funny)

    by El Jynx (548908) on Thursday October 08, 2009 @11:43AM (#29681831)
    Why, is Google asking that because they're running out of addressable memory space again?
  • Volume: 11 (Score:5, Funny)

    by TheNinjaroach (878876) on Thursday October 08, 2009 @11:44AM (#29681853)
    Well in *my* OS, the volume goes all the way to 11!
  • by captaindomon (870655) on Thursday October 08, 2009 @11:44AM (#29681857)
    has been transferred to another department - the Pit of Despair.
  • by FlyingBishop (1293238) on Thursday October 08, 2009 @11:47AM (#29681887)

    We're doing five blades.

  • by empgodot (1044446) on Thursday October 08, 2009 @11:47AM (#29681895) Homepage
    With Windows 6.1 being Windows 7, does Windows 8 actually mean Windows 7?
  • by Lord Lode (1290856) on Thursday October 08, 2009 @11:49AM (#29681927)
    That would make Windows a 128 bit wrapper around a 64 bit implementation of a 32 bit extension for a 16 bit patch to an 8 bit operating system, originally coded for a 4 bit microprocessor, written by a 2 bit company, that can't stand 1 bit of competition.
  • When will MS learn (Score:4, Insightful)

    by dingen (958134) on Thursday October 08, 2009 @11:51AM (#29681953)

    Windows 7 isn't even officially released and already nonsense is leaking about the next release with promises they can't keep.

    FIrst let them release WinFS.

  • 128 bit OS? (Score:5, Funny)

    by gumpish (682245) on Thursday October 08, 2009 @11:52AM (#29681969) Journal

    16.8 million terabytes of RAM should be enough for anyone.

  • by Captain Spam (66120) on Thursday October 08, 2009 @11:53AM (#29681975) Homepage

    Well, that settles it, then! Why on earth would I buy a paltry 64-bit Windows 7 when a much shinier and newer 128-bit Windows 8 is right around the corner? I'd best hold off until then! Thanks, Microsoft!

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Cajun Hell (725246)
      Make sure you get the best hardware, too. The Osbourne 3 is optimized for Windows 8.
  • by FunkyELF (609131) on Thursday October 08, 2009 @12:00PM (#29682077)

    This has been discussed on OSNews and it is most likely about the filesystem or FPU and not memory addressing.

    http://www.osnews.com/story/22301/128-Bit_Support_in_Windows_8_9_ [osnews.com]

  • by DoofusOfDeath (636671) on Thursday October 08, 2009 @12:03PM (#29682113)

    Quoth Balmer, "Let's see hackers find our security holes in this address space!"

  • by gmuslera (3436) on Thursday October 08, 2009 @12:07PM (#29682163) Homepage Journal
    - BSOD now in 4D (3 spatial dimensions and time, more precisely from 1988 to 2015)
    - That is what requires Security Essentials to have a string sample in memory of every Windows virus/trojan before 2006
    - Bill Gates finally agreed that 640k wasnt enough for everyone.
    - Codenamed Windows TNG, where no bit has gone before
    - You actually will need all that memory to not require swapping (unless you load more than 3 apps)
  • by 91degrees (207121) on Thursday October 08, 2009 @12:12PM (#29682249) Journal
    In terms of memory, 64 bits can address 18 exabytes. Even Google isn't going to be using that for a decade or so. Assuming Moore's law continues, it will be about half a century before PCs need that much RAM. Dealing with 128 bit numbers for mathematics is of limited use (if you do want to deal with them, you'll probably have a need for 256 byte and 512 byte numbers as well).

    And it's not like there's been much perception of a need for 128 bit CPUs. 64 bit processors have been around since the 1960's with fairly mainstream CPUs sine the early 90s. I don't think this is like RAM. I think there's a limit to how many bits we can use.
  • idiot (Score:3, Funny)

    by smoker2 (750216) on Thursday October 08, 2009 @12:13PM (#29682259) Homepage Journal

    His page read: 'Working in high-security department for research and development involving strategic planning for medium and long-term projects.

    Yeah right. Gob like the mersey tunnel.

  • by Sponge Bath (413667) on Thursday October 08, 2009 @12:23PM (#29682395)

    long long long?
    really long long?

  • by MountainLogic (92466) on Thursday October 08, 2009 @01:00PM (#29682895) Homepage
    The discovery came to light after FORMER Microsoft Research employee Robert Morgan carelessly left details of his work...
  • by jgarra23 (1109651) on Thursday October 08, 2009 @01:03PM (#29682923)

    According to Wikipedia

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Glenndale_University [wikipedia.org]

    this University isn't even accredited!!

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