FAQ

I can't see anything
called a T2100. I have 3 X2100 servers which are opterons.
Right I meant X2100's, sorry.
Python cannot use psyco on opterons at all -
32 bit mode or otherwise.
Are you sure? I'm not saying I have reason to believe differently, but
I just want to be sure.

The Psyco docs say it requires "A 32-bit Pentium or any other Intel 386
compatible processor. Sorry, no other processor is supported. Psyco
does not support the 64-bit x86 architecture, unless you have a Python
compiled in 32-bit compatibility mode".

Sun's "The Solaris Operating System on x86 Platforms" guide says "The
AMD64 (64bit x86)
architecture was done in a way very similar to how Intel had done the
i80386, and
processors based on AMD64 (much unlike Itanium/IA64) are, in good old
x86 tradition,
fully binary backward compatible. Of course, actually using the new
64bit operating
mode requires porting operating system and applications (like using
32bit on the
i80386 did require at the time). But even when running a 64bit
operating system does
AMD64 provide a sandboxed 32bit environment to run existing
applications in (again,
like the i80386 which allowed the same for 16bit programs running on a
32bit OS).
Therefore the AMD64 architecture offers much better investment
protection than IA64
?V which will not run existing 32bit operating systems or applications.
"

As I read it, this says that when the Opteron is used in "the new 64bit
operating mode," as it is on the X2100, it is no longer Intel 386
compatible except in a "sandboxed 32bit environment". Then the question
would be whether 32-bit python can be run in the sandboxed 32bit
environment. Since I don't have an X2100 yet and haven't played with it
or studied the docs yet, I don't know what it entails.

Have you explored that?
The T2000 has a new
cpu for which I have no data about python performance.
The T2000 has up to 8 relatively slow cores. Python's GIL (and the way
the app is designed) eliminate the possibility of making use of more
than one core for now. In the future that may change, but I need an
immediate solution and re-architecting is not possible right now.
If you can benchmark your own code on a target machine, on solaris,
linux or windows, you can quickly figure out if it's "fast enough".
The more speed I have, the better output I'll be able to get. This
application is a case where there is no "fast enough". The more speed,
the better, within financial constraints.

Gary

--

Gary Robinson
VP/Innovation
Emergent Music, LLC
grobinson at goombah.com
207-942-3463
Company: http://www.goombah.com
Blog: http://www.garyrobinson.net

O
Message: 2
Date: Fri, 07 Apr 2006 02:34:02 GMT
From: ross lazarus <replytothe at newsgroup.please>
Subject: Re: 32-bit python on Opteron, Solaris 10?
To: python-list at python.org
Message-ID: <uckZf.3380$v9.3221 at trndny01>
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=ISO-8859-1; format=flowed

The answers depend entirely on the cpu in my experience. I'm staring
at http://www.sun.com/servers/index.jsp and I can't see anything
called a T2100. I have 3 X2100 servers which are opterons. Psyco only
runs on x86 cpu hardware. Python cannot use psyco on opterons at all -
32 bit mode or otherwise. Pypy may fix this soon. The T2000 has a new
cpu for which I have no data about python performance. I am sure it
will run, but it may or may not be super fast if that's important to
you. On the ultrasparcs I have had an opportunity to fool with, python
runs "fast enough" for computationally intensive tasks (ie it's
useable) but relatively slowly compared to the x86 hardware I have
access to - particularly if psyco is available. I was once told that
python was more at home on CISC than on RISC CPU architecture and
being a trusting soul, accept this since it's consistent my own
limited experiments.

If you can benchmark your own code on a target machine, on solaris,
linux or windows, you can quickly figure out if it's "fast enough".
Exactly what means depends on the throughput you require and a stopwatch.

Your mileage may vary and there may be sun mavens on the list with
more reliable information than mine.

Gary Robinson wrote:
I'm in the market for a server to run some python code which is
optimized via psyco.

Sun T2100 servers come with Solaris 10, which comes with python
pre-installed.

Since those servers use the 64-bit Opteron box, I would assume that the
Python is a 64-bit version. (Does anyone know whether this is
true/false?)

The Psyco documentation says that for psyco to work, Python needs to be
compiled in "32-bit compatibility mode". I've never compiled Python, or
tried having multiple versions running on Solaris. I looked at the
README for the Python source and didn't see anything about "32-bit
compatibility mode", though I may have missed it. Or is it a matter of
choosing a 32 bit compiler to compile against? Any info would be
appreciated.

Finally, I'm wondering if anyone could give any feedback about
problems/roadblocks in compiling Python in "32-bit compatibility mode"
and running it alongside the pre-installed Python that comes with
Solaris 10.

Any input or tips would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks
Gary

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