26 October 2009
64-bit computing used to be the province of scientists and engineers, but now this generational shift in computing gives all users the tools to apply the power of 64-bit to speed up everything from everyday applications to the most demanding scientific computations. Although Mac OS X is already 64-bit capable in many ways, Snow Leopard takes the next big step by rewriting nearly all system applications in 64-bit code¹ and by enabling the Mac to address massive amounts of memory. Now Mac OS X is faster, more secure, and completely ready for the future.
The 64-bit transition.
The entire computing industry is moving from 32-bit to 64-bit technology, and it’s easy to see why. Today’s Mac computers can hold up to 32GB of physical memory, but the 32-bit applications that run on them can address only 4GB of RAM at a time. 64-bit computing shatters that barrier by enabling applications to address a theoretical 16 billion gigabytes of memory, or 16 exabytes. It can also enable computers to crunch twice the data per clock cycle, which can dramatically speed up numeric calculations and other tasks. Earlier versions of Mac OS X have offered a range of 64-bit capabilities. Now Snow Leopard takes the next step in the transition from 32-bit to 64-bit.
Built-in applications are now 64-bit.
Ready for the future.
The 64-bit support in Snow Leopard makes Mac OS X completely ready for whatever computing enhancements might arrive in the future. For example, Snow Leopard is ready to support up to 16 terabytes of RAM — about 500 times more than today’s Mac computers can accommodate. That may sound like more RAM than you’ll ever need, but who can predict the requirements of high-performance computers in the future? Mac OS X Snow Leopard comes prepared for anything.
Another leap forward.
QuickTime X is the next-generation media technology that powers the audio and video experience in Mac OS X Snow Leopard. From Quicktime its inception in 1991, QuickTime has stood at the forefront of video technologies — first with software-based video, then with Internet video. Now QuickTime X takes another leap forward by building on the amazing media technologies in Mac OS X — such as Core Audio, Core Video, and Core Animation — to deliver enhanced playback, greater efficiency, and higher quality.