*updating* 8088's

Chuck Guzis cclist at sydex.com
Tue Nov 20 10:03:47 CST 2007

On 20 Nov 2007 at 10:03, Ethan Dicks wrote:

> There was plenty of 32-bit code being written in 1989... just not for MS-DOS.

No doubt (I probably used a lot of it).  But how much was available 
at the debut of the 386sx?  The PC world took an extraordinarily long 
time to fully embrace 32-bit code.  In 1989, there was Windows/386, 
but that was about it from Microsoft--and it wasn't wildly popular.  
I remember packages such as 386max, but those weren't applications 
per se, just operating enhancements.

Even Windows 3.0 was a full year away in 1989.  OS/2 2.0 was 3 years 
off; Windows NT was 4 years away (and I wouldn't call 3.0 a 32-bit 
bit OS because it could load 32-bit VxDs).   That was pretty lame for 
a CPU feature that had been available to the public since 1986--and 
known, more or less accurately, by vendors for at least a year prior 
to that.

Maybe the "16 BIT S/W ONLY" chips didn't help either.

In 1989 most protected-mode code was 16-bit.  I recall an Intel 
application engineer moaning about this at the time.  I suspect a 
fair number of people grabbed a 386sx because they thought it would 
make things run faster--or for the hype.


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