[Bf-committers] Support for 32-bit architectures

Sybren A. Stüvel sybren at blender.org
Mon Nov 16 16:36:22 CET 2020

Hello list,

Blender 2.80 was the last version of Blender for which 32-bit builds
were officially supported. This was announced by Brecht in [1].
That announcement was a bit unclear to me, which I let pass because it
wasn't that relevant for my position back then. However, now that I'm
the Linux platform maintainer, I wouldn't mind if the situation was

In that announcement, Brecht writes:
> Blender 2.80 was the last release where we officially support 32 bit Windows and Linux builds. [...]
> We will continue to support it to the level that we do for example ARM. That is we keep the Blender code working independent of the processor architecture, particularly for Linux packages. But we don't actively test them or release our own builds.

This sounds like an impossibility to me: the promise that we keep
things working, but without building, or testing. Apparently there is
also a distinction between "official support" and "support to some

The Blender requirements page [2] does list 64-bit as a requirement.
But, there is no "last version that supported 32-bit" in the "Previous
Versions" section of that page. Also there is no mention of dropping
official support for 32-bit architectures in the 2.81 release notes

I found out about this unclear situation when looking at a patch that
ought to fix an issue on 32-bit platforms [4]. In the discussion on
that patch, Brecht writes:
> When writing or reviewing code, you ensure that there is always a processor architecture independent code path. And if you get a report and it turns out such a code path is missing or broken, you fix it. It's the same for x86, mips, sparc, etc.

This looks like a statement that these platforms are still supported.

Personally I would summarize the above as:
- Blender Foundation does not provide buildbots for 32-bit platforms.
- Developers have to ensure these platforms keep working.
- Testing such fixes is unnecessary.

I think I'm misunderstanding the situation here, and I wouldn't mind
if this was clarified.


[1]: https://lists.blender.org/pipermail/bf-committers/2019-August/050124.html
[2]: https://www.blender.org/download/requirements/
[3]: https://wiki.blender.org/wiki/Reference/Release_Notes/2.81
[4]: https://developer.blender.org/D9577

More information about the Bf-committers mailing list