Support for M1-based Macs?


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M1 Macs run x86 code just fine transparently via Rosetta 2 with very little performance penalty (or at least none that you'd notice in an app like Resilio Sync.) So just use what's already there.

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54 minutes ago, jdrch said:

M1 Macs run x86 code just fine transparently via Rosetta 2 with very little performance penalty (or at least none that you'd notice in an app like Resilio Sync.) So just what's already there.

I'm not clear if you are representing Resilio on this or just sharing an opinion. Can you clarify, please?

We don't yet have clear benchmarks regarding battery consumption of emulated apps vs native apps. On my machines, Resilio tends to use a consistent 0.7% CPU. That's not a huge amount and I'm not in a position to claim definitively that a native app will use less, but power management is certainly one of the reasons that apps will go native over time.

In any case, I'd love to hear from the source.

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9 hours ago, luomat said:

 

Be that as it may, I still hope the the app will be updated for actual M1 support rather than relying on Rosetta 2.

 

 

The iOS build supports the M1 natively. The entire point of Rosetta 2 is the same as that of WOW back in the day and WOW64 today: to enable unmodified binaries compiled to target a different instruction set to run with no penalty on the host OS. From the M1 reviews I've read, Rosetta 2 handles this perfectly. From a performance perspective, you're not gonna gain a whole lot from a native build anyway because literally the toughest thing Sync does from a CPU perspective is hash files, which even the slowest current gen CPUs handle easily. The limiting factor in Resilio Sync workload performance will almost always be network speed, not CPU execution.

But you don't have to take my word for it. Per AnandTech's M1 review (emphasis mine):

Quote

Generally, all of these results should be considered outstanding [...] [Rosetta 2] is [...] a full-fledged compatibility layer that when combined with the outstanding performance of the Apple M1, allows for very real and usable performance of the existing software application repertoire in Apple’s existing macOS ecosystem.

 

9 hours ago, zendnez said:

I'm not clear if you are representing Resilio on this or just sharing an opinion. Can you clarify, please?

We don't yet have clear benchmarks regarding battery consumption of emulated apps vs native apps. On my machines, Resilio tends to use a consistent 0.7% CPU. That's not a huge amount and I'm not in a position to claim definitively that a native app will use less, but power management is certainly one of the reasons that apps will go native over time.

In any case, I'd love to hear from the source.

The only people who represent Resilio are the ones with Sync Support, Admin, etc. around their profile pic. Staff don't automatically respond to everything. Assuming you have a paid license, the best way to get their direct attention is to file a ticket. I'm speaking purely on the basis of having used Resilio Sync as the backbone of my own personal IT workflow since 2014.

If you really want native code right now, use the iOS build, which AFAIK runs natively on the M1.

As for future plans, from what I gather reading posts on here, Resilio Sync macOS (I don't own a Mac, but plan to get an Apple Silicon one as soon as it fits into my budget) support isn't exactly the strongest of the OSes it supports (that would be Linux & Windows, from my firsthand experience); mostly because some of the OS' design and restrictions hinder its intended functionality. Search the forum for "macOS" to see for yourself. Personally I've been waiting for an Illumos port forever. That said, Resilio Sync's combined OS and platform support is the widest of any competing solution and possibly the widest of any 3rd party application I've encountered. I count 15 builds per release at that last link. 16 if you include the iOS build that's not on that page.

TL,DR: There's reason to be optimistic about a native build in the medium to long term, but I wouldn't expect one in the short term. If you want to speed up the process, file a ticket about the lack of an Apple Silicon build.

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Thanks for the response. I addition to the outstanding question about if/when we can anticipate a universal binary from Resilio, you bring up a bunch of fun topics.

The comparisons to WOW/Wow64 aren't quite accurate, though they did both address a similar scenario in which an operating system and/or processor architecture evolved and app compatibility was maintained. WOW/WOW64 were thin layers that did things like shim OS API calls, fiddle without pointers, and flip the OS (in some cases) between 32-bit and 64-bit mode since X64 processors were designed with that capability.

Rosetta 2 is different. It derives from the earlier instance of Rosetta which facilitated Apple's processor transition from PowerPC to x64. Rosetta was at least partially informed by the work Apple did to transition from Motorola 68k to IBM PowerPC. Back when that happened in the mid 90's, none of us thought it would work but Apple pulled it off. Initially with a very brute force emulation strategy (emulating not just 3rd party code but large portions of MacOS itself) and, not long after, with their "dynamic recompilation" emulator which seemed like total science fiction to most of the industry. If you're looking for a fun history lesson, take a peek at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dynamic_recompilation. In other words, it's not about supporting the evolution of an architecture, it's about getting code to run on a completely different architecture. I don't know the extent to which it does this via one-time recompilation (and caching on disk) versus runtime translation versus a combination of both (which I think is probably closer to the truth).

I haven't checked to see if the iOS app for Resilio is available in the MacOS app store. Unless they actively blocked it, my understanding is that it will be. But I don't think it's a legitimate alternative to the MacOS version - iOS apps run as sandboxed on MacOS as they do on iOS. I suspect it'll sync a file structure in its own sandbox which isn't really what we need.

Emulation is awesome. It gets stuff running. I have a new MacBook Air and I can attest that the early reports about its performance are spot on including native and emulated code. I don't have enough time with it to state with confidence that the emulated Resilio app works flawlessly. Microsoft had to ship an update to Office just to get it to work. Google had to ship Chrome for the same reason. Microsoft's Edge beta channel works, the release channel doesn't. The issues that apps have won't necessarily prevent launch - they can cause other issues. So, minimally, it's worth it for every software vendor to vet compatibility, update if necessary, and share longer term support plans.

Anyhow, fun conversation and the kind of thing that would likely be even more fun to chat about over a beer. At some point, I'd still love to hear from Resilio on their thoughts and plans!

 

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