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The latest IBM zSeries® processor, the IBM System z10™ processor, provides hardware support for the decimal floating-point (DFP) facility that was introduced on the IBM System z9® processor. The z9® processor implements the facility with a mixture of low-level software and hardware assists. Recently, the IBM POWER6™ processor-based System p™ 570 server introduced a hardware implementation of the DFP facility. The latest zSeries processor includes a decimal floating-point unit based on the POWER6 processor DFP unit that has been enhanced to also support the traditional zSeries decimal fixed-point instruction set. This paper explains the hardware implementation to support both decimal fixed point and DFP and the new software support for the DFP facility, including IBM z/OS®, Java™ JIT, and C/C++ compilers, as well as support in IBM DB2® and middleware.
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