• X-Plane And Apple's Move to ARM Processors

    X-Plane And Apple's Move to ARM Processors

    On Tuesday Apple announced new Macs powered by Apple's M1 chip, a custom ARM system-on-a-chip based on the Apple A-series System on a Chip (SoC) from the iPhone and iPad.

    The rest of this post is probably only of interest to Mac users, but for Windows users, it's worth noting that the M1 chip is fast. It targets laptop and low power use cases, not gamer-class hardware, and it's not a discrete GPU. Here's my 27" iMac - Intel says the i9 in it is a 95W part:

    Single core: 1265 Multi-core: 9414

    and here's a new M1-based MacBook Air, with 8 cores running at ten watts:

    Single core: 1732 Multi-core: 7545

    That's a pretty high score for Apple's first trip into desktop land. One more for perspective:

    AMD's new Ryzen 5900X, which is a great chip, with a 105W TDP:

    Single Core: 1619, Multi-core: 13656

    The take-away here is that Apple doesn't just have fast chips for their new machines, they might have the fastest ones.

    Now, how is this going to work with X-Plane and plugins?

    X-Plane 11 is an x86_64 app, as are all plugins ever written for it. So if you run it on an Intel Mac, it just works, and if you run it on one of the new ARM Macs, it will run using Rosetta, which will translate the code as you fly.

    In the future, we will have an X-Plane build that is "universal" – that is, it contains ARM and x86_64 code, and we will have a plugin SDK that contains both ARM and x86_64 code. At this point, plugin authors can start recompiling plugins to contain both types of code as well. Users with ARM Macs will have the choice to (1) run ‘natively’ in ARM for higher performance and use only plugins that are universal or (2) continue to run x86_64 code under Rosetta, so that all plugins work.

    (This option is available for all apps that are universal on an ARM Mac – you turn “Use Rosetta” on or off in the app properties.)

    This situation is exactly the same as the PPC->x86 transition we went through years ago.

    Plugin developers: once Big Sur and the new X-code are out and we have an ARM plugin SDK, you can add a new architecture to your project and that should be it, as long as you don’t use any x86 assembly code in your add-on.

    Source
    Where to Send Feature Requests | X-Plane Developer
    X-Plane 11.50 Now Released


  • Recent Forum Activity

    davidc2

    Zendesk help received (sort of)

    Thread Starter: davidc2

    I submitted a Zendesk help ticket for my updating problems. They replied back and this is part of what they said: MSFS2020 is still crashing...

    Last Post By: davidc2 Today, 10:30 AM Go to last post
    roypaglia

    After new update menu bar

    Thread Starter: roypaglia

    After new update menu bar on top stays on. Used to go after a few seconds. Any way to remove? Thanks (Thinking of you Tim!)

    Last Post By: foosie Today, 10:26 AM Go to last post
    usb777

    Bijan Seasons

    Thread Starter: usb777

    After the last update for MSFS 1.8.3 the older V5 edition of Bijan Seasons would hang up the program and after asking for help and downloading the...

    Last Post By: usb777 Today, 10:23 AM Go to last post
    Mac6737

    This Update Has Been a Total Disaster!

    Thread Starter: Mac6737

    I've added to a few other threads here, but might as well start my own. Before the update, I was having plenty of CTD problems, but I was still...

    Last Post By: tiger1962 Today, 10:16 AM Go to last post