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WinXP to include support for Transmeta Crusoe chips

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Support for Transmeta CPUs is quietly under development as part of Microsoft's next generation WinXP OS. Beta testers staring vacantly at the blue install screen while filenames flash by claim to have been jolted awake by the evocatively-named crusoe.dll.

Microsoft's developers have helpfully tagged the file as a "processor device driver," so indeed it is that Crusoe that's being catered for. Presumably Microsoft reckons that going the extra mile in WinXP to support Crusoe's features specifically will come in handy for something when the OS actually ships.

Intel mightn't be best pleased about this, especially coming on top of recent revelations here about WinXP Sledgehammer support, but then the Wintel alliance is largely based on mutual suspicion, going on loathing, anyway.

The Microsoft Crusoe development work is no doubt associated with the likes of the Tablet PC project Microsoft showed off at Comdex last year. If the Tablet becomes a product it likely won't happen much before Fall 2002, but the Microsoft Comdex prototypes allegedly used Crusoe, and WinXP (Whistler, as it was called at the time) was envisaged as the base OS.

The prospect of WinXP in lighter, more portable devices may also incidentally provide some kind of explanation for Microsoft's recent interest in 800x600 screen resolutions, mightn't it? ®

Related stories

MS and Sledgehammer: Whistler SDK reveals all
Transmeta chief talks Crusoe megaservers with The Reg

Reducing security risks from open source software

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