Second Life’s 32-Bit Viewers

The Lab and most other viewer authors are building 32-bit programs. We are seeing more people building 64-bit viewers. The Lab has yet to move that direction with their Second Life™ Viewer. The stats coming out of the Lab show that 64-bit versions are way more stable or in plain English; crash less often.

Lifeguard Kwai

Lifeguard Kwai by Bernard Broono, on Flickr

The game PlanetSide 2 is discontinuing support for 32-bit systems. Specifically their new version of the game will only run in a 64-bit operating system. Massively OP mentions it in their article: Planetside 2 Discontinues Support For 32-Bit Client. The game managers realize some people will be locked out of the game. From there stats it is ‘a very few people.’ Management presumably feels keeping up with technology is worth the cost of losing a small number of users. 

The Lab has not been making any noise about building their own 64-bit viewer. But, they make it plain the 32-bit viewer runs much better in a 64-bit operating system.

When will the Lab consider a 64-bit viewer? I suspect not any time soon. When asked they tend to point to the funner things they want to work on.

What about Project SANSAR? I am betting it will only be 64-bit. Ebbe started the Project to avoid legacy issues while advancing the Lab’s virtual world. Now-a-days a 32-bit CPU is considered a legacy device.

In the PC desktop world 64-bit CPU’s arrived in 2003 and became ubiquitous in 2004. Computers generally last less than 10 years. A few last longer. Others are repaired and the owners hang on. But, the majority of computers are now at least 64-bit capable.

4 thoughts on “Second Life’s 32-Bit Viewers

  1. I switched to Kokua 64 bit Linux viewer, when the offical viewer stopped working on Linux systems with the tools update. It works great so far. If a small 3rd party viewer can provide a 64 bit flavour, why is that a problem for the Lab with its hundrets of developers?

    • The problem is in deciding how to use limited resources.

      There is no word on how many people continue to work on Second Life verses Project SANSAR. The Lab’s future rests on the success of Project SANSAR. That is a huge project on a short time line. I don’t expect the Lab to use resources on anything that does not ultimately contribute something to SANSAR. A 64-bit viewer isn’t needed for SL. While it would be nice, its just nice.

  2. Same here. I have used Singularity 64bit since it was released and I can count the number of crashes on one hand.

  3. Windows 10 will have a 32-bit version, it would be foolhardy of the lab to abandon 32 bit before Microsoft do.

    However, I see no reason why the Lab should not release a 64-bit version of the viewer.

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