Discussion about Halfword handling on RISC OS machines


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The StrongARM (and later) contains instructions for loading and saving half-words. i.e, 16-bit values, instead of 32-bit or 8-bit values. However, because of limitations in RiscPC hardware (which in general, cannot correctly perform these instructions), these instructions are not generally seen on RISC OS, except for places like ROM code (e.g, on IYONIX and A9).

The 16-bit loads and saves can of course be done with 8-bit loads instead, but this requires multiple instructions, and using proper 16-bit instructions can be a significant speed improvement in certain types of code.

There's a discussion on the ROOL forums about the matter, including a test version of KinoAMP with these instructions used.

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