openSUSE Tumbleweed is transitioning to x86-64-v2 requirements

Similar to the fact that SUSE / openSUSE's Adaptable Linux Platform requires x86-64-v2 CPU support, the rolling release version openSUSE Tumbleweed is now transitioning to x86-64-v2 microarchitecture support.

The current development target of openSUSE Tumbleweed is x86_64 (v1), but it is gradually migrating to x86-64-v2. After the full transition to x86-64-v2, CPU instruction set extensions require CMPXCHG16B, LAHF-SAHF, POPCNT, SSE3, SSE4.1, SSE4.2, and SSSE3.

This means raising the CPU threshold, requiring newer CPUs from Intel Nehalem or AMD Bulldozer. Through the support of instruction sets such as SSE 4.2 and SSSE3, the compiler can better utilize the performance of the new CPU. The x86-64-v2 requirement limits Tumbleweed CPU support to Intel CPUs from the past 15 years or AMD hardware from the past 10 years.

This is a smart move for openSUSE / SUSE. In addition to openSUSE ALP requiring x86-64-v2, other releases such as RHEL9 also require x86-64-v2, and even AVX has required x86-64-v3.

In openSUSE's announcement today regarding the x86-64-v2 transition, they do note that a community repository is being established where x86-64 (v1) support can be maintained for users still using systems that are not supported now.

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