[Haskell-cafe] Building Haskell Platform natively for 64bit Windows

Andrew Coppin andrewcoppin at btinternet.com
Thu Jun 9 20:53:23 CEST 2011

>> On the other hand, I still think it would be worth actually
>> benchmarking this stuff to see how much difference it makes. Wouldn't
>> surprise me if the CPU designers did some clever trickery with
>> pipelining and superscalar execution to make two adjacent 32-bit
>> instructions execute the same way as a single 64-bit instruction would...
>> (I've seen various sources claim that running software in 64-bit mode
>> only gives you a 2% speedup. Then again, they presumably aren't
>> testing with chess software which heavily utilises explicit 64-bit
>> operations.)

> For a chess engine this is for sure not true. I guess that this is one
> of very few domains where it really matters! The most (basic) operations
> with bitboards are anding, oring, xoring, shifting and (for magic
> bitboards) multiplying 64 bits values. When using 32 bits you need for
> some of these more then double time to achieve the same.

I'm still left wondering if using 32-bit instructions to manipulate 
64-bit values is actually that much slower. Back in the old days of 
non-pipelined, uniscalar CPUs, it would certainly have been the case. 
Today's processors are far more complex than that. Things like cache 
misses tend to have a way, way bigger performance hit than anything 

> I was wondering if there is a possibility to support 64 bit native codes
> without other stuff (calling conventions, win64 specific system calls
> etc). This could be perhaps a first step to full 64 bit support. But
> from the code of ghc I could not understand what this would mean.

I'm wondering if you could write the operations you want is small C stub 
functions, and FFI to them and do it that way. I don't really know 
enough about this sort of thing to know whether that'll work...

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