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Red Hat Linux Advanced Server will offer native 64-bit processor support for Hammer and will be compatible with existing 32-bit Linux applications, the company said. Working in conjunction with AMD, Red Hat plans to demonstrate a 32-bit version of Red Hat Linux Advanced Server running on a 64-bit Athlon-based system at the Linuxworld 2002 exhibition in San Francisco.
The 64-bit Athlon processor, previously codenamed ClawHammer, is expected to begin shipping later this year and is targeted at the desktop market. AMD will also next year ship a 64-bit processor named Opteron, formerly known as SledgeHammer, for multi-way servers and workstations. Both chips are based on AMD's x86-64 architecture that provides support for 32-bit and 64-bit software.
Red Hat is the latest software company to announce plans to support AMD's Hammer family of 64-bit processors. Linux SuSE has said it will ship a 64-bit version of its Linux operating system for Hammer and Microsoft has announced plans to release a 64-bit version of its Windows XP operating system optimised for Hammer.
IBM has also announced plans to ship a version of its DB2 database for the Hammer version of SuSE's 64-bit Linux OS.