Download of the day: Intel Threading Building Blocks for multithreaded applications

Posted on in Categories Download of the day, Linux last updated July 25, 2007

Intel has open-sourcing their cross-platform Thread Building Blocks 2.0 (TBB) template library. This is considered as Intel’s largest open-source commitment to date. TBB is a popular software C++ template library that simplifies the development of software applications running in parallel on multicore computer. From the project page:

Intel Threading Building Blocks (TBB) offers a rich and complete approach to expressing parallelism in a C++ program. It is a library that helps you leverage multi-core processor performance without having to be a threading expert. Threading Building Blocks is not just a threads-replacement library. It represents a higher-level, task-based parallelism that abstracts platform details and threading mechanism for performance and scalability.

For developers, the clear benefits of Threading Building Blocks are:
1. TBB significantly reduces the number of lines of code required to develop multithreaded applications;
2. TBB significantly reduces the programming complexity for developing multithreaded applications (by abstracting many details of thread management);
3. TBB’s task manager automatically analyzes the system the software is running on, chooses the optimal number of threads, and performs load balancing that spreads out the work evenly across all processor cores;
4. As a result, TBB threaded applications automatically scale to fully utilize all available processing cores on whatever computer they run on – including future systems that will have many more cores than are available (or affordable) today.

Download Intel Threading Building Blocks

What you should (and shouldn't) expect from 64-bit Linux?

Posted on in Categories Linux, News last updated September 13, 2006

Update: Many issues mentioned in linked articles are no longer true. This post was originally written way back in 2006.

Nathan Willis has some good information on this topic.

From the article:

So you just bought and assembled a brand-new AMD64 workstation. The only decision that remains is whether to install a 64-bit Linux distribution, or stick with comfortable, tried-and-true IA-32. If you are seeking an easy answer to that question, I can’t help you. Running 64-bit Linux has its pros and cons. Unfortunately, a lot of the cons are out of your hands — but they’re not really Linux’s fault, either.

For starters, you should know that there are essentially no proprietary applications for a 64-bit Linux desktop. Google, Adobe, iD, Skype, and the rest of the independent software vendors (ISV) who release Linux binaries of their apps by and large do so solely for 32-bit Intel architecture only.

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