Intel abandons x86 hardware support in Itanium

Intel scraps once-crucial Itanium feature

Anyone wishing to run programs for x86 chips on Montecito must use Intel emulation software called IA-32 Execution Layer, or IA-32 EL, that was first released in 2004.

“IA-32 EL provides much better performance and flexibility for 32-bit applications on Itanium,” spokeswoman Erica Fields said of the choice. “With Montecito, we took back the silicon area that was being used up by the x86 hardware support.”