Re: "obsolete" hardware

yuri mironoff (
Wed, 11 Jun 1997 00:02:24 -0400 (EDT)

On Tue, 10 Jun 1997, Trevor Jenkins wrote:

> I'm looking forward to the day when my venerable old 386 can be
> retired from running MS-DOS/Windows 3.1 to the freedom of running
> Linux. If by the time I do that I'm expected to bleed because
> Linux will then only working on cutting edge stuff then I'll not
> remain a Linux supporter for long.
> There's a difference between wanting and having. The real beauty of
> Linux, for me and I suspect others, is that we can run multi-user
> services/servers on hardware that cannot run Windows 3.1 let alone
> run Windows 95.

Of course there is another way of looking at this. There are lots
of current and upcoming applications that do require lots of horsepower.
By the same token there are fewer and fewer (if any) applications being
written that target a 486 (let alone a 386) as a minimum requirement. Try
running anything X/Motif based and you'll see what I mean. If Linux
developers concentrate their attention on trying to be compatible with
obsolete hardware as opposed to taking advantage of cutting edge features
other operating systems will overtake Linux by running slower on faster
hardware - not exactly a pretty picture.

Bottom line is I'd rather say "Linux runs faster on a quad P7" than
"Linux still runs on my 2mb 386" a year from now. A well executed design
means nothing unless it performs. Nothing PERFORMS on a 386. Lets not
loose sight of our goals here for the sake of keeping backward

Take as a warning the longevity of the PC bus architecture. Would you
care to guess why we're still stuck with it? Backward compatibility. Its a
dirty word.



P.S. I skipped a more than a couple of lunches to upgrade to my
first Pentium. Not that many really - but it was definitely worth it. ;)