Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 14th Sep 2012 22:30 UTC
Intel You'd think this sort of stuff belonged to the past - but no. Apparently, Microsoft is afraid of Android on its Windows 8 tablets, because Intel has just announced that it will provide no support for Linux on its clover Trail processors. Supposedly, this chip is "designed for Windows 8". What?
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RE[2]: Comment by redshift
by saso on Sat 15th Sep 2012 10:19 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by redshift"
Member since:

Its more likely it doesn't have a thing to do with MS and has everything to do with IP. Its pretty well known that Intel has been using PowerVR IGPs in many of its mobile processors and PowerVR really couldn't care less about Linux support.

Let's be clear, this is pure unsupported conjecture. (N.B. not agreeing with you doesn't mean I agree with Thom.)

So what is Intel supposed to do? The IGPs they have in the core series will blow the power budget, their other in house IGP suck, so that pretty much leaves the PowerVR team.

How about at least putting out a binary blob driver, like lots of vendors do? (nVidia, AMD, Broadcom, etc.) This argument has been shown to be wrong before.

If Linux would have gotten more than 1% of the market this wouldn't have happened,

You do realize that the non-Apple tablet market (for which this chip is almost certainly targeted) is about 100% Android (and thus Linux)? Windows 8 has 0% of the market. Thus, from a pure business perspective (even accepting your above arguments about IGPs), it makes next to no sense at all to target a non-existent market with a new product, unless there are other motives behind it as well (such as an exclusivity deal with Microsoft). Just to drive this point home a bit better, let's quote the linked article on the The Inquirer:

As Intel is pushing Clover Trail into tablets, a category of devices that is dominated by Linux based Android and the Unix BSD based IOS, the firm said it will not support Linux on Clover Trail.

Is this absolute 100% proof that Intel and Microsoft have an exclusivity deal? No. But it makes it extremely likely, to the point of being beyond a reasonable doubt.

Edited 2012-09-15 10:22 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 8

RE[3]: Comment by redshift
by bert64 on Tue 18th Sep 2012 12:40 in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by redshift"
bert64 Member since:

An x86 port of Android would be a red headed stepchild...

Best case it would be no worse than the more common ARM devices, it would run the same platform neutral or open source apps, with equivalent performance and battery life.

Worst case...

It won't run a large number of existing Android apps which are closed source and only compiled for ARM.
It will use more power than competing ARM designs, and therefore have inferior battery life.

An x86 windows tablet on the other hand, does offer benefits over an arm based windows tablet (availability of existing programs, albeit program unsuitable for use on a tablet ui)... The windows tablets will be different enough to the android tablets to mask any efficiency differences, and the x86 tablets will be sufficiently better than the crippled arm version of windows that many people will be happy to sacrifice some battery life for a massively superior device.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[4]: Comment by redshift
by lemur2 on Wed 19th Sep 2012 02:29 in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by redshift"
lemur2 Member since:

It won't run a large number of existing Android apps which are closed source and only compiled for ARM.

Whilst I agree with the main point of your post, I do question this assumption.

Android apps are written in "Dalvik", which is modelled after Java (it is not derived from Java, since Dalvik has no Java code). As I understood it, a Java app, and hence a Dalvik app, contains bytecode and not compiled binary.

"Dalvik is the process virtual machine (VM) in Google's Android operating system. It is the software that runs the apps on Android devices. Dalvik is thus an integral part of Android, which is typically used on mobile devices such as mobile phones and tablet computers as well as more recently on embedded devices such as smart TVs and media streamers. Programs are commonly written in Java and compiled to bytecode. They are then converted from Java Virtual Machine-compatible .class files to Dalvik-compatible .dex (Dalvik Executable) files before installation on a device."

Hence I would assume that Dalvik-compatible .dex (Dalvik Executable) files are architecture independent.

An x86 Android device could therefore execute the exact same Dalvik executable .dex files as an ARM device, without any re-compilation required.

Edited 2012-09-19 02:30 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2