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SubjectRe: 2.2.18Pre Lan Performance Rocks!
"Jeff V. Merkey" <> said:
> One more optimization it has. NetWare never "calls" functions in the
> kernel. There's a template of register assignments in between kernel
> modules that's very strict (esi contains a WTD head, edi has the target
> thread, etc.) and all function calls are jumps in a linear space.
> layout of all functions are 16 bytes aligned for speed, and all
> arguments in kernel are passed via registers. It's a level of
> optimization no C compiler does -- all of it was done by hand, and most
> function s in fast paths are layed out in 512 byte chunks to increases
> speed. Stack memory activity in the NetWare kernel is almost
> non-existent in almost all of the "fast paths"

Nice! Now run that (i386 optimized?) beast on a machine that works
different (latest K7s perhaps?), and many optimizations break.

When you got that fixed, would you please port it to Alpha?

Sure, using C (with a not-overly-bright compiler) has a non-negligible
cost. But huge benefits too. The whole of software (including OS) design is
an excercise in delicate juggling among conflicting goals. Had Linus gone
down the "all-assembler, bummed to its limits" route, Linux would have been
dead by 0.03 or so, depending on the stubborness of its creator to be sure.
Horst von Brand
Casilla 9G, Vin~a del Mar, Chile +56 32 672616

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