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Please release a 64-bit version of MUSHclient

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Posted by Draeand   (1 post)  [Biography] bio
Date Sun 04 Feb 2024 01:38 AM (UTC)
I'm running Windows 10 22H2 (AMD64) build 19045.3930, and I've noticed that whenever I run MUSHclient (version 5.06) my computer feels considerably slower. I'm unsure if this is due to the fact that it's a 32-bit application, but it's the only application where this happens. I am using a screen reader, so that may be the issue, but I'm wondering if a 64-bit version could be released alongside the 32-bit version for more modern systems.
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Posted by Nick Gammon   Australia  (23,016 posts)  [Biography] bio   Forum Administrator
Date Reply #1 on Tue 06 Feb 2024 06:32 AM (UTC)

Amended on Tue 06 Feb 2024 06:33 AM (UTC) by Nick Gammon

I asked ChatGPT about this request, which came up with this:

  1. Performance Differences Between 32-bit and 64-bit Applications: Generally, 64-bit applications can be faster than their 32-bit counterparts due to their ability to use more memory and higher processing capabilities of 64-bit processors. This can be particularly beneficial for applications that require significant memory or computational resources. However, if MUSHclient is not particularly resource-intensive, the performance improvement might be minimal.
  2. Compatibility with Screen Readers: If the performance issue is related to the interaction between the screen reader and MUSHclient, a 64-bit version may not necessarily address this. The compatibility and efficiency of communication between the screen reader and MUSHclient could be more related to how the application is coded rather than its bitness.
  3. System Overhead: Running 32-bit applications on a 64-bit system does incur some additional overhead, as the system has to translate 32-bit calls to 64-bit. This overhead is typically minimal, but in some cases, it could contribute to performance issues.

Moving from a 32-bit to a 64-bit application is not a trivial task and would require significant changes:

  1. Code Modification: The source code would need to be reviewed and modified to ensure compatibility with a 64-bit architecture. This includes updating data types that are dependent on the architecture, like pointers and long integers.
  2. Dependency Management: Any libraries or dependencies used by MUSHclient would need to be available in 64-bit versions. If these dependencies are only available in 32-bit, they would either need to be replaced or updated.
  3. Testing: Thorough testing is crucial to ensure that the 64-bit version runs correctly and that any performance improvements are realized without introducing new issues.
  4. Distribution and Support: Offering a 64-bit version means maintaining two separate versions of the software, which can double the effort required for updates, bug fixes, and customer support.

In summary, while a 64-bit version could potentially offer some performance improvements, especially in terms of memory usage and processing, it's not guaranteed to solve the specific issue encountered, especially if it's related to compatibility with the screen reader. The transition to 64-bit also involves significant development and maintenance effort.

I pretty-much agree with its assessment. Making a 64-bit application would not be trivial, may introduce other issues, and may not fix your problem. For an app which is provided as open source, interested people can make their own 64-bit versions.

This app was originally released in 1995, and possibly is approaching the end of its useful life.

Someone is planning to rework the client, see this thread:


- Nick Gammon

www.gammon.com.au, www.mushclient.com
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