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Linux beating Win64 to Itanium punch

No wonder Intel has a Linux fetish

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Jamie Minnotto, who headed Tandon (remember them?) ten years back, had his own troubles with Intel, even in those days. But he was always reluctant to have a pop at the chip firm.

After all, in a phrase that still works today, he said: "You don't tread on the tail of a tiger, do you?"

Well, Microsoft may not be a tiger nor even a mammal, but you certainly don't want any kind of vicious creature turning on you and rending you, and this could explain why Intel is fighting shy of complaining about the progress of Win64 while continually wooing the Open Source community.

Sources close to the progress of Win64 told The Register over the weekend that progress on the Microsoft 64-bit port is indeed slower than expected. This must worry Intel a tad, given that roadmaps we saw earlier in the year suggest that the launch date for the Merced-Itanic platform is mid-July.

One developer said to us: "I believe Intel has a fetish for Linux on Itanium because of the delays in Win64, or more accurately the confluence of factors. While it would be silly to rile up Microsoft... given the tremendous volumes and potential, if Win64 isn't delivered on time, that is in October or November, Linux and Monterey are likely to be Intel's best hope."

Besides, as he added: "How do you beta Win64 if there are very few boxes out there, this seems like a chicken and egg sitation." Our information, however, is that there are very many Itanic boxes out in the real world, albeit in the hands of Fujitsu Siemens, The Big Q, and the Almighty Dell.

Meanwhile, he adds that progress on debugging code, even on Linux, is a tad slow, pointing to threads you can find on this bulletin board. ®

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