I have noticed that often we have two choices when we download an Intel product,
for example Visual Studio, its either x86 or x64.
Possibly a customer could amke the wrong choice, and then his software might not install properly.
It has to be compatible with his existing installation, right ?
If this has already been discussed, could you please refer us back to that ?
The Intel products have a single download, but current Intel Parallel Studio XE supports installation on 64-bit systems only.
Microsoft Visual Studio, likewise, has only a single download, though it supports install on 32-bit (at least I have never seen different downloads for 32-bit and 64-bit.)
MS Visual Studio Project builds can target: Win32, x64 or x86
Intel Visual Fortran uses either: Win32 or x64 targets/platforms
Whereas x86 is used by MS compilers, for example C#, in situations where a single application can run as 32-bit or 64-bit as the case may be as determined at runtime.
Intel installer should not be soliciting a choice of x86 as this would be confusing to the user when they create their first MS VS Solution.
Note, older versions of Intel Parallel Studio supported both/either Win32 or
Parallel Studio installers including both 32- and 64-bit compilers give you an option whether to install one or the other, with the default being to install both. In theory, the online install should allow downloading only one or the other. When Visual Studio defaulted to 32-bit compiler only, even on X64 Windows, you would require the optional X64 support in order to use 64-bit Parallel Studio.
Visual Studio always includes 32-bit support, so you wouldn't have the problem of typical linux systems which come with 64-bit libraries only, causing the 32-bit PS install to fail.
I have often wished that the installer would check if the machine has MIC hardware before installing MIC components, and ask for confirmation from the user if MIC components are to be installed without the hardware being present.
I recognize that the current PC could be used to do cross-compilations for a MIC target PC, but the installation should not select MIC components by default.
I agree - the default to install MIC components causes more confusion than just about anything else in the Parallel Studio installer. I'd say that 99% of Windows customers have never heard of MIC or Xeon Phi (and would probably confuse Xeon Phi with Xeon server processors.) That the install refers to "Intel Debugger Extension" makes things even worse. I think the number of Windows customers using Xeon Phi could be counted on fingers.
Support for my MIC KNC has been dropped from the currently supported compilers, so I have no reason to install those components. I never saw the practicality of the Windows options for MIC (different reasons for KNC and KNL). The promised upward compatibility from KNC Windows usage to KNL didn't appear to be delivered (binary compatibility never was expected). I wouldn't be surprised if Steve's comment is true.