[Python-Dev] 64-bit process optimization 1

Guido van Rossum guido@python.org
Tue, 10 Sep 2002 09:54:58 -0400

> > Unfortunately, one problem is binary compatibility.  We try to make it
> > possible to link newer Python versions with extension modules (like
> > Numeric, which you use) compiled for older versions.  This requires
> > that the binary lay-out of objects remains the same, and swapping
> > ob_refcnt and ob_type would cause immediate crashes in this case.
> a compromise could be to make the swap in 2.3, but only
> on 64-bit platforms.
> it's obvious that most people are stuck on 32-bit platforms
> today, and I think it's safe to say that users on 64-bit plat-
> forms might be a bit more willing to build everything they
> need on their local platform.
> another alternative would be to make it a configuration option,
> with a platform-dependent default.

I like all of that.  Maybe it should also be a config option whether
refcount, sizes etc. should be 32 or 64 bit quantities on 64 bit

--Guido van Rossum (home page: http://www.python.org/~guido/)