64 bit windows adventures

As Kjetil put it, my new PC at work puts me way ahead of the curve. I got a AMD 64 bit Dual-Core machine, with 2 GB of RAM and 2×250 GB RAID-0. I figured XP Professional 64 bit would be the right OS to run.

There is not a lot of software availabel for 64 bit Windows. Luckily, it runs 32 bit legacy applications nicely, so it’s okay to mix and match. Still, there’s some trouble.

The first problem came after I installed Thunderbird. I installed the official 32 bit release, because the 64 bit releases struck me as pretty experimental. When I fired it up, it almost immediately reported “connection timed out connecting to server” on my IMAP account. Turns out, there’s a known bug in Thunderbird with dual core machines: The timing code uses the QueryPerformanceCounter() fucntion. It can be fixed by assigning a processor affinity to the program, so it only runs on one of the two cores. You can do this either manually from the taskmanager, or once and for all using a progam called imagecfg.exe (goolge for it if you need it).

The next issue was more serious: There are no 64 bit versions of TortoiseCVS and TortoiseSVN. The reason that’s serious is that they are explorer shell extensions, and to extend the 64 bit Windows Explorer, your program has to be a 64 bit application. There’s a 32 bit version of Explorer for those cases, but I was hoping to avoid that kind of switching around. I mean, I’ll have the 64 bit Explorer open by default, so CVS will be cumbersome. Let’s hope they get on the case soon.

The third issue is compilers. We use VS2003 to make Anarchy Onlie, and while we’re not switching AO to 64 bit, I really want to be able to compile my own 64 bit apps. There’s no 64 bit compiler with VS2003, though (I hear that VS2005 has one), so I’m not sure where to get one from. Intel has one, but I’ve found it cumbersome to use. Which reminds me, I have to look into 64 bit cygwin. I guess that’s not ready yet.

But man, this thing is nice.

[ media | Briskeby-Joe Dallesandro ]

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