Deja vu: the same thing happened when question about more the 4GB of memory in 32-bit system was raised. Of course it's insane to try to handle 16GiB or 32GiB with 32bit CPU. Of course the proper solution is switch to 64bit CPU. But when the most popular arch is 32-bit and users need huge memory systems - what can you do ?
Here we have the same situation. Most CPUs are balanced (PPC, Athlon64, etc), but there are one vendor which sells two architectures of CPU which are seriously unbalanced. Can we safely ignore this obscure vendor and these crippled CPUs ? Not when vendor is called Intel and CPUs are Pentium 4 and Core 2. They both only have 128-items TLB (enough for 512KiB with 4KiB pages) and 4MiB of cache (at least in some models). That's 8 times difference! Yes, this is insane, yes, this is problem of CPU design. Yet when it's the most popular vendor and the "crippled architecture" is the most popular CPU from said vendor - you can not just ignore the problem and hope that it'll go away.
There are rumors that Vista SP1 will use 4MB pages to speedup I/O...
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