Van de WINE-website:
Myth 10: "Wine is for Intel x86 only"
Well, it is true that Wine only runs on Intel's x86 processors. Unfortunately it will also require quite a lot of work before it runs on other processor architectures.
But what do we mean by 'running on a non x86 processor'.
First it can mean 'I can compile a Windows application on Sparc, link it with Winelib, and have it run on Solaris'. I know, this is not what you had in mind. This may seem very restrictive and yet would be very useful: it means easy porting of Windows applications to almost any Unix architecture. In any case this is the first step towards allowing Wine to run on other processor architectures. Unfortunately Wine's code is not very portable to other processor architectures, partly because some parts of it have to know a lot about the processor, and partly because most of it makes assumptions like 'sizeof(int)==sizeof(pointer)' and 'byte-sex==little-endian'. This is being worked on though, and progress is being made albeit slowly.
Then we could take it to mean 'Wine on Alpha should be able to run Windows NT Alpha applications'. The prerequisite for this is that Winelib compiles on Alpha (or MIPS, the other defunct Windows NT platform). Now, would it be really useful? I don't think many people have Windows NT applications for the Alpha or MIPS processor. So this is probably not that useful and also rather unlikely to happen since we would need a programmer who has just this combination of hardware and software to work on it.
Then there's what everyone has been waiting for: 'I want to be able to run my x86 Windows applications on any processor architecture I like. That's the most complex one. Again the prerequisite is that Winelib works on this architecture, which will definitely happen someday. Then 'all that is needed' is to integrate an x86 emulator with Wine (and also change Wine's name :-). Ulrich Weigand just did that as an experiment some time ago when he had 'some spare time'. He even managed to get some Win16 applications to run. His code was not in a state where it could be integrated into Wine yet and I don't know how much work has been put into pursuing it. His attempt did spark many discussions on Wine's mailing list though. The result is that we would need a sophisticated emulator including a JIT in order to get something really viable (i.e. not too slow). And developing such an emulator is a whole project in itself.
Does it mean it will never happen? Not sure. Maybe we'll get some motivated developers once the Winelib problems are solved. Of course, it would happen much faster if, for instance, Compaq made its Fx32! Intel x86 emulator open-source and financed the development of Wine for their Alpha machines. As with all open-source projects, if enough people are interested and pool their resources together, it will happen.
Het stukje tekst wat ik vet én schuin heb afgedrukt kan een verklaring zijn voor de "- Much improved PowerPC support." in de changelog.
Windows kan niet op de PowerPC gedraaid worden (alleen een oude NT, maar daar richten ze zich bij de ontwikkeling van Wine niet op, en de reden daarvoor beschrijven ze in de alinea over de Alpha's), maar ze proberen het wel zo platform onafhankelijk mogelijk te maken, zodat het wel mogelijk is mocht er voor bepaalde architecturen een x86-emulator verschijnen. Dit is al het geval bij de Alpha, zo valt er ook in het stukje te lezen.
Ze willen in ieder geval de code van Wine zo architectuur-onafhankelijk mogelijk hebben, zodat het gemakkelijk te porten is naar een andere architectuur zodra dat aantrekkelijk wordt. Dit is vrij lastig, omdat sommige delen van Wine erg x86-gericht zijn, maar ze werken er wel aan, en blijkbaar is er bij deze versie op PPC-gebied een stukje vooruitgang geboekt.