In his post on Current SPARC Architectures Darryl Gove explains the solution Solaris software engineers have devised to enable all generations of SPARC processor architectures to handle applications that target recent architectures. Prior to the solution Gove describes the problem was that recent applications would not work on older processors that lack the instructions provided in the new architecture. The solution? Allow the compiler to assume a "generic" architecture that has been made the default behavior of the compiler. With this fix the only flag that doesn't make the assumption is -fast, which tells the compiler to assume that the build machine is also the deployment machine - so the compiler can use all the instructions that the build machine provides, Gove explains. He also includes a Venn diagram in his post that illustrates which processors support which architectures. Not surprisingly, the T4 is the most versatile, supporting all the current instruction sets.
SPARC T4-4 Processor: Foundation of Oracle SPARC Supercluster
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