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  1. #1

    does "make menuconfig" affect whether kernel is 32 or 64 bit?

    this is a bit of a dumb question but I gotta ask it, does setting the "Processor family --->" option in make menuconfig affect whether the kernel created is a 32-bit or a 64-bit kernel?

    ie, if I put Processor family ---> (X) Opteron/Athlon64/Hammer/K8 does this make the kernel a 64-bit kernel or is this just optimisation inside either x86 or x86_64.

    Is it down to gcc whether the kernel is produced as a 32-bit or 64-bit kernel or does "make menuconfig" affect this?

    Does 64-bit source code have to be different to 32-bit code, or is it simply down to gcc to make is a 32-bit binary or 64-bit binary?

  2. #2
    Linux Engineer d38dm8nw81k1ng's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    i think it's all determined in gcc, and make.conf. the rest is possibly optimisations.
    ok, just looked at menuconfig and i'm certain that it's all determined within gcc. basically, you download the kernel sources and when you invoke menuconfig, the config menu that appears is determined by your make.conf settings, since the config menu is slightly different for the UltraSPARC CPU. i'd imagine it would be different again for ia64 CPUs. the option for Athlon64 in the x86 is just the athlon optimisations for the 32-bit athlon.

    SUMMARY: the settings in make.conf affect what architecture the kernel is built for. if you set make.conf to compile for ia64 (x86_64) procs then you will get code that is ia64 only. if you set make.conf to work for x86 (32-bit) procs then you will get code that only works on x86 procs. hope that helps.
    Here's why Linux is easier than Windows:
    Package Managers! Apt-Get and Portage (among others) allow users to install programs MUCH easier than Windows can.
    Hardware Drivers. In SuSE, ALL the hardware is detected and installed automatically! How is this harder than Windows' constant disc changing and rebooting?

  3. #3
    this is what I thought, I've getting different bs from various people and it's all left me a little confused, thanks for the help.

  4. $spacer_open

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