Friday, April 16, 2010

Visual Studio 2010

Visual Studio 2010 was released recently. With it comes a new C++ runtime that includes a parallel patterns library, targeted at making it easier to write programs that utilise all the cores in a modern processor.

InstEd does use OMP with some success. The problem with OMP is that it cannot be used with Microsoft's Profile Guided Optimisation. At least not with Visual Studio 2008's linker.

I plan on testing the new parallel patterns library in place of OMP. Unlike OMP, it will tie InstEd to Microsoft's compiler, but I suspect it already is tightly coupled anyway, and I don't see that as a problem for the type of product that it is (distinctly Windows only).

And hopefully, it will provide at least as good performance gains as OMP (perhaps better given its dynamic task allocation), combined with the ability to perform Profile Guided Optimisation for even better performance.

So, the next version of InstEd may be delayed, and may come with the new C++ runtime, depending on when I can get hold of Visual Studio 2010, the time cost in successfully converting the projects, and finally the results of testing.