Originally Posted by artem
Phoronix extensively tested 32, 32bit + PAE and 64bit architectures and they found out that:
1) 32bit PAE mode is never slower than pure 32bit mode.
2) In some case both 32bit and 32bit PAE modes are faster than 64bit mode.
The slowness of 32bit PAE mode is yet another urban myth.
On my 32bit PAE system 32bit Firefox works faster than its 64bit counterpart (I mentioned this fact earlier in this thread but you seem to have neglected that).
You also realize that none of those tests stressed to a point where memory usage was > 4GB which is where PAE kicks in. The penalty for using PAE is real, Michael's tests simply did not ever position where PAE would start being utilized. Also Michaels test's were done on a machine with only 4GB of ram. From the article itself,
Granted, we were using just 4GB of system memory that is common to many desktops, but if using 8GB, 16GB, or even a greater memory capacity the performance penalties are perhaps higher