I don't want to second guess my successful XBMC 9.11 on Revo 3610 running Ubuntu 9.10
#1
But it's a "64-bit" Ubuntu 9.10 install. Not 32-bit x86.

Spent better part of the day pouring through posts and information on fixing few issues with audio (hdmi) and video (eg. over scan). But at the end everything needed came from this forum. *** XBMC forum FTW ! ***

Now, the 1080p playback looks good, smooth, even at a high bit rate ~40 Mbps contents playback (wired network connection of course).

The HTTP service appears to be working (going into this setup i was concerned for HTTP service not working on 64-bit platform) and i'm able to control from the iPhone XBMC remote application.

This setup replaces my Windows HTPC and Popcorn Hour. XBMC just rocks !

***BUT*** there's this something in me that is second guessing in my choosing of 64-bit Ubuntu 9.10 over the 32-bit x86. Reading through few old posts (all being few months old) on 32-bit versus 64-bit discussions, seems like i would have been "better off" with going with 32-bit. Looks like all of XBMC developers are running the x86, and that means better support using what the developers are using. I don't know how popular is to run XBMC in 64-bit Ubuntu.

If i'm better off "re-installing" with 32-bit x86 Ubuntu 9.10, i will. And if that will give better compatibility on XBMC roadmap, then certainly worth the trouble to re-install with 32-bit.

But then again, so far playing with XBMC in current setup seems just right. Of course, i have not yet used all of its features including using different "skins", "library", so i do not know what compatibility problems lie ahead because i'm using 64-bit Ubuntu platform. Hopefully these features will work.

So, i guess i'm just looking for few "feel good" encouragements (or discouragements) toward sticking with my current setup with 64-bit Ubuntu.

Or, should i just wipe it clean, and do over with 32-bit Ubuntu? I just got started today, so won't be much of throw away if i were to start over with 32-bit.

One incentive for me to stay with current setup is that current Boxee Beta seems to have "native" build/support for 64-bit Ubuntu 9.10, so that's something to stick with 64-bit and XBMC. (and yes, i understand that there's no plan currently to have "native" XBMC build/installer for 64-bit platform).

Thanks much!
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#2
From what I have read, as it seems you have, if you can install 64Bit, go for 64Bit, but only if you have 4GB of RAM or more, since it makes no difference with less RAM than that...

It looks like Ubuntu will move towards 64Bit more and more, but it will take years before 32Bit is phased out.

Thus it really depends on how much RAM you have.

I also have a 3610, and I was wondering how you fixed the overscan issue. I use the Video Calibration option, but I find that the settings aren't saved if I run Boxee and then XBMC...Did you do anything funky other than mess with Video Calibration to fix overscan??
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#3
It is a common misconception that 64-bit makes no difference unless you have 4GB RAM or more. It is not all about the larger address space; code that utilizes the wider registers can benefit from this and in some cases execute several times faster on 64-bit than on 32-bit, depending on what it does.

With that said, I've been running XBMC (compiled from SVN) on 64-bit Ubuntu 9.10 for a couple of weeks now. As far as I can tell, there are no issues except for the web server which is sluggish and stops responding every now and then.
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#4
Hi,

I have XBMC running on Ubuntu Karmic x64 - and it runs great so far. However I do not have HDMI devices - I use component connectors for HD, because I have an 7 years "old" 42" Plasma from Sony.

I switched from Jaunty x86 to Karmic x64 and my impression is, it runs much faster now in 64bit (having 4GB RAM). It feels like an "hardware upgrade". I can put now some more Windows VM's on the same Box and other resource hungry stuff without bringing down the performance as it habppens in x86. So x64 rocks!

As long as I do not find any show-stopper with XBMC I will stick to the new x64 installation.

I plan to build a new neat low-power htpc based on ZOTAC ION board with Atom dual core CPU + NVIDIA on board running on x64 - I hope it will be faster than the x86 version and get the most out of the hardware.

I hope the x64 will become more popular on the dev. site soon - it is worth to go for x64 architecture.
Big Grin
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#5
I'd actually be interested in some real benchmarking/speed comparisons as I still don't think that 64bit makes sense on an atom system with less than 4GB RAM (and yes, I know atoms support EM64T)
OpenElec Standalone --> Asus Chromebox 'Panther' --> Onkyo TX-NR709 --> Sony 55" X85C Android TV (also with Kodi!)
Asus Chromebox EZ Script
Kodi on Sony Bravia Android TVs
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#6
As soon a s I have my ZOTAC IONITX I will try i386 and x64 setups and will post my results.

On the Core-2 Duo / Core-2 Quad processors it makes a difference with 2GB and 4 GB RAM set-ups.
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#7
Hannes The Hun Wrote:I'd actually be interested in some real benchmarking/speed comparisons as I still don't think that 64bit makes sense on an atom system with less than 4GB RAM (and yes, I know atoms support EM64T)

But since the atoms and all modern hardware that can playback media properly are 64bit machines, why are we still bothering with x86 installs?
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#8
As a developer (I created and lead Ubuntu Studio for years) I've went back and forth on this quite a bit. On apps like Ardour, Blender or A/V encoders I would gain a bit of speed on 64bit. (and of course the need for 4GB of RAM but who needs that for XBMC?) But for normal use (web browsing and a/v playback) I saw no advantage.

The disadvantage I saw was a lack of 64bit support for some things. Like Flash. But this is also a situation where if people don't go 64bit, devs will continue to not support it. Chicken&Egg situation.

So, I'd say if this is a purpose-built XBMC system, there's no harm staying 64bit. But, if you're doing other things, you might have a better go with 32bit.
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#9
Hi,

I have dual boot between Ubuntu 64 and 32 bit, both with xbmc, on a ASRokc ION 330. Just to see what is best. The troubles I have with ubuntu and xbmc, are until now the same on both. Mainly I will try use the 64 bit, and until know all sound HDMI etc. is working just fine.

I can only find old benchmarks, but I think they point in the 64 bit direction.

If someone knows some simple (free) tools/methods to benchmark the two systems, I would happily do it.
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#10
I read some old benchmarking thing like the one posted above, which claimed that boot-up speed was 15% or so faster with 64-bit.

Most processes related to media center usage, now that we have VDPAU, are not very time consuming, save for boot time of both the system and XBMC, so it really doesn't matter all that much either way you go. I run SDLMAME so I need the extra 5% of speed or whatever it is, and I haven't had any problems since the XBMC gurus fixed the 64-bit web server issues.

Also, believe it or not, 64-bit OSes run 32-bit software better than a fully 32-bit OS, so you can run "sudo dpkg -i --force-architecture *.i386.deb" to get most 32-bit only packages running in 64-bit.
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#11
Last i checked, x86_64 was faster and most of the downsides with regards to XBMC have gone. I'm running x86_64 now, for what that's worth.
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I don't want to second guess my successful XBMC 9.11 on Revo 3610 running Ubuntu 9.1000