Microsoft May Support AMD's 64-Bit Chips
Advanced Micro Devices is to announce on Wednesday that it has gained crucial support from Microsoft for its forthcoming
AMD of Sunnyvale, California, has scheduled a conference call for 4.30 p.m. Eastern time in which it plans to announce "two significant developments" related to its 64-bit processor family, according to
Microsoft's product manager for Windows in the Netherlands, Milo Schaap, says, "We are currently evaluating AMD's 64-bit processor." He would not comment on any announcement that may be made.
In addition to announcing Microsoft's support, AMD is also expected to unveil the brand name for its 64-bit chips, according to the
An endorsement from Microsoft would be a big deal for AMD, says Thomas Meyer, research group manager at IDC.
"AMD will obviously make a lot of noise about it and it will give them one more operating system that will support their 64-bit processor. It makes little difference for Microsoft, they have always been agnostic in terms of
Still, AMD should not expect customers to line up for the new processors, especially in the server space, says Meyer.
"AMD will have to prove that it can do multiprocessing and convince companies that its 64-bit processor actually works and can also run 32-bit applications," he says, adding that this is a task Intel faces as well, as sales of Itanium have been disappointing. Worldwide, close to 450 servers running Itanium were sold in the fourth quarter of 2001, a fraction of the worldwide server market, Meyer says.
An endorsement from Microsoft, if one comes, could raise some awkward questions for AMD. Jerry Sanders, AMD's chairman and chief executive officer, testified at the
Microsoft has already pledged support for Intel's line of 64-bit processors.