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Macintosh Users: "SpeedDoubler"



For you Macintosh users, I thought I'd share with you my experiences with
SpeedDoubler, a new utility that (effectively) doubles or even triples
performance of many applications that still are heavily dependent on 68K
code (as opposed to purely PowerPC code).

My PowerMac 7100av is currently running at 80 MHz, with a 512K L2 cache,
and 40 MB of physical RAM. (I can remember when 32K of "core" was a huge
amount, and I can remember when Intel supplied 8 MB to CDC for their
"Plato" system...at that time, one of the largest solid state memory
installations ever.)

SpeedDoubler, from Connectix, is a $60-70 (street) product that takes 68K
code and makes various optimizations for the PPC. It's effectively the 68K
emulator that Apple should have provided.

(For you non-Mac users who are reading this, this technology of
intercepting and translating code, is likely to be used to get higher
performance out of code written ostensibly for one CPU but actually run on
a later iteration of the processor. Such as the Pentium or P6 in running
16-bit code.)

In Speedometer, I saw a 3.9x increase in "CPU"-related tasks (for 68K
code), and a 2.4x increase in a SmalltalkAgents application which is only
available at this time in 68K code form.

Even the Finder runs faster, as various parts of it are still written in
68K code.

So, as many programs are still in 68K code form, and not yet rewritten for
the PPC, SpeedDoubler effectively gives you a machine that is almost twice
as fast.

There may be a few incompatibilities, and I would suggest you read
comp.sys.mac.apps and other groups to verify that your critical apps are
not having any problems.

All I can say is that I'm very happy.

--Tim May



---------:---------:---------:---------:---------:---------:---------:----
Timothy C. May              | Crypto Anarchy: encryption, digital money,
[email protected]  408-728-0152 | anonymous networks, digital pseudonyms, zero
Corralitos, CA              | knowledge, reputations, information markets,
Higher Power: 2^756839      | black markets, collapse of governments.
"National borders are just speed bumps on the information superhighway."