In today’s gizmo world, PowerPC is one of the most widely used microprocessors. PowerPC is the short form of Performance Optimization With Enhanced RISC Performance Computing. As the name indicates, PowerPC processors are designed, based on Reduced Instruction Set Computing (RISC) architecture. This microprocessor was designed and developed by joint effort of Apple, IBM and Motorola engineers in 1991. Though initially it was developed for personal computers, but later the system designers started using this processor frequently for other applications, like embedded systems and video game consoles. Since the design of PowerPC was done based on IBM’s POWER architecture risc-v, there is a high level of compatibility between these two.
The RISC architecture was conceived by the engineers, involved in IBM’s 801 project in mid 1970s. 801 based microprocessor was employed in a large number of IBM embedded systems. Later on, this processor was upgraded to 16 register ROMP processor, which was used in IBM 6150 Series workstations. Finally, in early 1990s the 64 bit POWER architecture was introduced in the RISC System/6000. During this time, IBM,Motorola and Apple joined hands to design and develop PowerPC processors. Once the PowerPC products were introduced in the market, they were received by the software vendors with enthusiasm. Microsoft developed Windows NT 3.51 for PowerPC based servers. Sun Microsystems came up with new version of Solaris, specially designed for PowerPC based systems. By mid 1990s, PowerPC was upgraded to match the performance of fastest x86 CPUs.
PowerPC processor is modeled on RISC architecture,which allows super-scalar implementation. There are two implementations of PowerPC. One is 32 bit and the other one is 64 bit. In addition to the double precision forms, single precision forms of some floating point instructions are supported. The 64 bit implementation is backward compatible with 32 bit implementation. The new memory management architecture of PowerPC is a paged one,which is widely used in server and desktop systems. For complicated design issues, IBM support providers render online round the clock PC support services.