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Old 20th March 2009, 16:06   #21  |  Link
turbojet
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Which web browsing does benefit quite a bit from. What I don't understand from Microsoft is that Vista 64 bit dominates 32 bit in sales (and reports say they expect Windows 7 64 to dominate 32 even more) and they have IE7 64 and 32 installed by default but they are only supporting IE 32 with silverlight which is a very common web browser support tool.

While Microsoft still has to rely on adobe (real and quicktime have had IE 64 plugins for some time) for 64 bit IE support. if they had adobe support and chose to set IE64 as default on windows 7 64 they could stop some of the firefox bleeding, at least the user's that use firefox mainly because its faster then IE 32 which it clearly is but it's not as fast as IE 64. Minefield is hardly noticeably faster then IE 64 but I prefer the gui and the well supported plugin system from mozilla.

It's like on one hand Microsoft is trying to push forward with 64 bit (rightfully so) while on the other hand they are trying to work against it.

I was really expecting Silverlight 3 to have 32 and 64 bit support, I'm really bummed it doesn't appear to and I'm sure I'm not alone.

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Old 20th March 2009, 16:18   #22  |  Link
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Well, having a 64-Bit OS has a number of advantages. You can utilize 4+ GB of RAM and you are prepared for upcoming 64-Bit applications.

Still this doesn't mean that you must use only 64-Bit applications on a 64-Bit OS. Few applications are available for 64-Bit Windows yet (although the number is increasing), 32-Bit applications work fine.

So I can understand that M$ and Adobe decided that it's not worth supporting a 64-Bit browser at this time. Chrome and Firefox show us that 32-Bit browsers can be really fast!

Anyway, I wonder why M$ pushed out 64-Bit InternetExplorer at all. If they are not going to fully support 64-Bit InternetExplorer, they consequently should never have released it - at this time.

(Note: Even 64-Bit InternetExplorer feels so MUCH slower then 32-Bit Firefox/Chrome that the room for improvements definitely is somewhere else...)
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Old 20th March 2009, 16:24   #23  |  Link
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Adobe has 64 bit linux support for quite some time and 'working' on 64 bit windows support, which is supposed to come in flash 10.

True 64 bit OS's doesn't mean you have to use 64 bit apps, but in this case it's saying I have to use 32 bit even though it's inferior.

Firefox and Chrome are very fast, but slow in comparison to IE7 64, Minefield.

The only company that we are discussing that shows lack of interest in 64 bit in this discussion is Microsoft, specifically with Silverlight.

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Old 20th March 2009, 16:49   #24  |  Link
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Adobe has 64 bit linux support for quite some time and 'working' on 64 bit windows support, which is supposed to come in flash 10.
At least 64-Bit Windows support obviously isn't a priority for them. 64-Bit Flash Player is in the 'we are working on it' state for quite some time now...

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Firefox and Chrome are very fast, but slow in comparison to IE7 64, Minefield.
I can't agree. InternetExplorer 7.0/8.0 (even the 64-Bit versions) feels horribly slow, no matter how many benchmarks pretending the opposite they publish.
Not only that it takes absurdly long to open a new tab, it also takes far to much time to load a web-site. Often the entire browser seems to freeze for a few seconds!
Hence the 32-Bit versions of Firefox/SeaMonkey as well as Chrome just feel a whole lot faster to me.
I also tested 64-Bit Minefield against 32-Bit Firefox, but I can't notice any significant difference, as the latter already feels perfectly smooth.

But that's getting a bit off-topic now, I think
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Old 20th March 2009, 18:57   #25  |  Link
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Makes sense only if the particular applications benefits from 64-Bit, as 32-Bit apps run just fine on 64-Bit OS and usually have better support...
thats the same half assery as 16bit programs in 32bit OSes...
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interlacing and telecining should have been but a memory long ago.. unfortunately still just another bizarre weapon in the industries war on image quality.
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Old 20th March 2009, 19:14   #26  |  Link
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thats the same half assery as 16bit programs in 32bit OSes...
Not really. 32-bit was a HUGE improvement in security, stability, and development from 16-bit. 32-bit was really a whole new and much better beast for writing and running software. 64-bit is a relatively minor improvement on top of 32-bit, the value of which is dependent on the application.

For software that needs huge memory like a database, it's an obvious win. Ther's a reason that the current Exchange is 64-bit only. Windows Media Services is also quite a bit faster in 64-bit mode.

But other stuff, it simply does't address any actual bottlenecks in the code. There's no end-user difference in browsing experience due to being in 64-bit; you're never going to need 4+ GB browsing today's web, and the extra registers simply aren't that material.

From my own field, we never found a way to do anything all that compelling with 64-bit for video compression; SSEx and memory architecture are massively more important. While we dabbled with a 64-bit version of WME, we discoverd that most of the performance improvements there were applicable to 32-bit as well. In the end, we could provide better net performance by focusing on 32-bit instead of having to split dev/test across two different ISA's. The focus on making 32-bit faster made encoding on 64-bit faster than if we'd spent half as much effort focused on just 64-bit.
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Old 20th March 2009, 22:53   #27  |  Link
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I guess it all depends on the code. x264 gets a nice 5-15% speed boost in most cases just from a 64 bit exe. Using 64 bit avisynth/splitter/decoder is expected to give more of a boost.

I did some benchmarks with peacekeeper on an X2 3800+ 1GB RAM vista 64 box and this was the results:
Firefox 3.0.7: 300
Minefield 3.0.7: 307
IE7 32: 164
IE7 64: 199

There's definitely some differences but I'm not sure how accurate the benchmark is.

My only gripe with Microsoft is that they aren't supporting their own 64 bit web browser by keeping Silverlight 32 bit only yet they expect 64 bit windows to keep dominating 32 bit in sales.
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Old 20th March 2009, 23:03   #28  |  Link
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I guess it all depends on the code. x264 gets a nice 5-15% speed boost in most cases just from a 64 bit exe.
Because x264 is highly CPU limited, is optimized for x64 and doesn't have any GUI. That's not exactly comparable to a web-browser

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There's definitely some differences but I'm not sure how accurate the benchmark is.
Not very accurate. If the benchmark would represent how "fast" and "responsive" a browser feels in real-life usage, the numbers would look more like this:

Firefox: 100
Minefield: 105
IE7 32: 10
IE7 64: 11
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Old 20th March 2009, 23:24   #29  |  Link
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Someone's biased.
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Old 20th March 2009, 23:29   #30  |  Link
Dark Shikari
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Someone's biased.
Yeah, giving IE scores that high is absurd.
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Old 20th March 2009, 23:46   #31  |  Link
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Because x264 is highly CPU limited, is optimized for x64 and doesn't have any GUI. That's not exactly comparable to a web-browser
Uh that was in response to ben's claim that focusing on 32 bit encoding is more beneficial then spending half the time focusing on 64 bit. Which I can't disagree with when it comes to WME but depending on the code it's not always true.

Web browsing mainly involves many reads/writes of small files, like decoding or antivirus. Both of which have proven benefits from optimized 64 bit code as opposed to optimized 32 bit code on a 64 bit OS.

Anyhow it's pretty clear that silverlight 3 won't be released in 64 bit from what I understand, guess I will have to wait even longer to get rid of firefox. Maybe when Flash 64 bit drops they'll consider it.

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Old 21st March 2009, 04:09   #32  |  Link
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I guess it all depends on the code. x264 gets a nice 5-15% speed boost in most cases just from a 64 bit exe. Using 64 bit avisynth/splitter/decoder is expected to give more of a boost.
It'd be interesting to see that end to end test, and to do some profiling to see where the speed gains really come from.

Like I said, when we did WME x64 edition, it was a whole lot faster than the 32-bit version. But once we looked at the optimizations that were done, there was very little that was 64-bit specific in that.

Often doing a 64-bit port is a great excuse to do some performance improving refactoring, so just because a 64-bit verisons is faster doesn't mean that it's faster due solely to 64-bit features.

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My only gripe with Microsoft is that they aren't supporting their own 64 bit web browser by keeping Silverlight 32 bit only yet they expect 64 bit windows to keep dominating 32 bit in sales.
It's always down to delivering the best customer value per release given dev/test costs. Having to test on a whole additional set of browsers and develop for another ISA would have meant fewer other new features. I'm sure we'll do a 64-bit verison down the road, but there were other higher priority features to deliver in SL3.

Since .NET bytcode itself is bitness-agnostic, Silverlight apps for 64-bit wouldn't be any different, so if we reach a point where 64-bit browsing has a significant advantage over 32-bit, a Silverlight 64-bit version would take the existing base of applicaitons along with it for free.

But really, the places where we sweat performance in Silverlight aren't things that that 64-bitness would help. Conversely, SSE2 is a HUGE win all kinds of places in Silverlight.

Those with a more recent CompSci background than mine would have more useful thoughts on this, but it seems that SIMD-heavy code isn't going to get as much value out of 64-bit native as branchy scalar code, where those extra registers are a big help. And even with 2K encoding with 16 reference frames, it's hard to see an instance of an encoder getting anywhere near 4GB of memory utilization. The encoders I see using even 2 GB of RAM running are generally running multiple encoder instances for parallelization, but no one process is using even 1 GB of RAM.
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Old 21st March 2009, 09:41   #33  |  Link
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How does the GPU acceleration is working now (what is done to make it secure) ? is DXVA 1.0 still supported XP or only 2.0 (Vista/Seven) is it browser dependent ?
Is Smooth Stream already implemented for H.264 in the Windows Media Server ? is it supported in MediaRoom ?
Performance compared to Adobes Mainconcept Decoder in FlashPlayer (Software Decoding) Multithreaded ?
when is the SL OpenVideoPlayer code gonna be updated with the 3.0 tree ?

http://showcase.premiere.de/PremiereShowcase.htm <- hope we gonna see some similar Showcase based on H.264 and SL3
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Old 21st March 2009, 10:37   #34  |  Link
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How does the GPU acceleration is working now (what is done to make it secure) ? is DXVA 1.0 still supported XP or only 2.0 (Vista/Seven) is it browser dependent ?
Silverlight 3 does not use DXVA. It only supports GPU scaling and compositing, like Flash 10.
Read "GPU scaling and compositing" at http://blogs.iis.net/benwagg/archive...for-media.aspx
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Old 21st March 2009, 16:07   #35  |  Link
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Like I said, when we did WME x64 edition, it was a whole lot faster than the 32-bit version. But once we looked at the optimizations that were done, there was very little that was 64-bit specific in that.
It's also the case for x264. Only a handful of SIMD functions make use of more than 8 SIMD registers. So most of the roughly 10% boost is brought simply by compiling for 64 bits (more registers, faster calling convention). Imho, the only scenario in which x64 wouldn't help that much is when a piece of code is memory bound.

Finally, since x264 is both open source and already insanely optimized for 32bits, it's a good project to test what speed ups x64 can manage. As you said, if a closed source application gains 50% speed up in x64, we can't conclude anything since the whole application may have been rewritten while being converted to x64.
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Old 21st March 2009, 16:12   #36  |  Link
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Thx for the link i just read this "GPU acceleration and H.264 video support;" and thought it means DXVA, but i guess it's a to heavy security problem implementing it in a Webbrowser Plugin
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Old 21st March 2009, 16:57   #37  |  Link
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From my own field, we never found a way to do anything all that compelling with 64-bit for video compression; SSEx and memory architecture are massively more important.
Maybe if the win64 ABI was more sensible (XMM6+XMM7 are now non-volatile, WTF?) you would have had different findings. </rant>
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Old 21st March 2009, 17:38   #38  |  Link
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Silverlight 3 does not use DXVA. It only supports GPU scaling and compositing, like Flash 10.
Read "GPU scaling and compositing" at http://blogs.iis.net/benwagg/archive...for-media.aspx
Exactly. Getting DXVA working well cross-platform for VC-1 and H.264 would be...challenging to say the least. And it's generally the older machines that don't have GPU decode where you'd most want it anyway.

A much broader swath of the installed base can handle GPU scaling and compositing, which winds up helping media playback anyway as it saves CPU and memory bandwidth the decoders can now have.

We're trying to be really crisp in communicating it as "GPU compositing and scaling" - Adobe's Flash 10 marketing left a lot of people thinking that they were doing actual decoder acceleration on the GPU, and we don't want to confuse the market in the same way.

We're also trying to hold the line on HD as being at least 1280 pixels wide; zambelli and I are fighting hard against this "480p is HD for the web!" nonsense . Hence the March Madness player is being labled as "HQ" not "HD."

http://on10.net/blogs/benwagg/March-...ding-settings/
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Old 21st March 2009, 18:12   #39  |  Link
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Ben you might be better to shift the HQ +Wide Screen to better fit peoples expectations today.

if your really looking for a must have option for the future SilverLight3 , write and include as a generic option,making sure to turn it on from first install (with an easy GUI/shell option to turn it off OC), what?
a "Multicast tunnel client/server" make it as simple or complex a model as you like, that any (AVC)video content can then use as its generic WWW streaming path.

but this generic Multicast tunnel MUST be included and documented for easy interfacing from any 3rd party code, and a browser plugin that knows about and uses this tunnel and any "SAP ANNOUNCE" data found as default.

http://www.dailywireless.org/2009/03...ll-everywhere/
"....CBS has embedded its Silverlight March Madness and live game coverage directly onto a YouTube channel...."

"...Microsoft’s Silverlight powers the channel. It is the first time YouTube has ever been able to offer live TV. In addition to the Flash-based ~550Kbps standard def streaming, the optional Silverlight player will deliver “high-definition quality video” running at ~1.5Mbps to millions, at home or on the go. At MIX09, this week in Las Vegas, Microsoft was showcasing Silverlight technologies. ...."

give people the choice and make it easy for them to migrate from the old antiquated Unicast streaming to a real multicast bandwidth saver and you might see the web become far more usable for multicast tunneled user created content with SL3 at the core....

having the ability to live Multicast (through a tunnel) your content to just 3+ people interested in it, gaves you a saving in both bandwidth and processing long term,never mind the likes of massive savings Youtube streaming sites might make, so make multicasting tunnels easy to use and a generic option for everyone....

VLC and the like might then finally include some form of Multicast tunnel in their core code too compliment their existing generic Multicast Transport Stream abilitys, and so make it easy to bypass the worlds major and minor ISPs that refuse to give direct access to the MultiCast protocol to/from their end users


video stream<>SL3-server<>multicast-tunnel<> any client/plugin listening/asking for the content

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Old 21st March 2009, 18:56   #40  |  Link
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Ben you might be better to shift the HQ +Wide Screen to better fit peoples expectations today.
Yeah, I like the "HQ" moniker, since it reminds the not very technical of HD, without being misleading to those who know the proper definition.

Also, with Smooth Streaming, we're working to make HD delivery a lot more feasible, so we'll be able to accurately call a player HD.

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if your really looking for a must have option for the future SilverLight3 , write and include as a generic option,making sure to turn it on from first install (with an easy GUI/shell option to turn it off OC), what?
a "Multicast tunnel client/server" make it as simple or complex a model as you like, that any (AVC)video content can then use as its generic WWW streaming path.

but this generic Multicast tunnel MUST be included and documented for easy infacing from any 3rd party code, and a browser plugin that knows about and uses this tunnel as default.
In the end, Silverlight really is an application framework, so we've stayed away from any cases where it would ever be implicitly triggered. Silverlight doesn't get any file type associations, so the only time it ever gets used is when it's explicitly called. The Moonlight guys have done something kind of like this with Moonshine. With the new out-of-the-browser mode, having Silverlight work more like a desktop player is a little more feasible, but for security reasons it'll never have unfettered access to the local file system. Something like Moonshine could certainly incldue a native code multicast proxy and then call Moonlight/Silverlight, serving the media as a localhost web service.

As for multicast, I think the proxy chaching of Smooth Streaming provides a lot of the value without nearly the same infrastructure overhead. Multicast is mostly of interest for enterprise (where there aren't internal proxy caches) and low latency (where a chunk-based approach gives a multi-second broadcast delay).

http://on10.net/blogs/benwagg/Beta-R...oth-Streaming/
http://on10.net/blogs/benwagg/Live-S...nter-Olympics/

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give people the choice and make it easy for them to migrate from the old antiquated Unicast streaming to a real multicast bandwidth saver and you might see the web become far more usable for multicast tunneled user created content with SL3 at the core...
The problem with multicast is that very few users in the USA actually have end-to-end multicast enabled routers to them from the public internet. We've supported multicast in Windows Media for years, and it's virtually unused for consumer media except in the few countries where they had a goverment mandate for multicast support.
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