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Write a VC++ program that does many mathematical calculations using floating-point values. Compile it with both Visual Studio 2003 (VC++ 7.1) & 2005 (VC++ 8.0) compilers, and run both executables independently.
The VC++ 7.1-compiled executable takes less time to execute compared to the VC++ 8.0 executable.
By default in Visual Studio 2005, the /fp:precise floating-point model is used, which converts floats to doubles, and then does double-precision math. In Visual Studio 2003, this conversion does not happen, and hence it takes less time.
If performance is to be given more priority than precision, compile the VC++ 8.0 (Visual Studio 2005) code with /fp:fast option. However, if the user code is sensitive to the precision with which the commutation is done, /fp:fast may cause unexpected results. If speed is the primary goal, then /fp:fast should be tried, but making sure to verify that the program is giving acceptable results in calculations.
In VS2003, /Op- is the default floating model used. Whereas in VS2005, the new floating-point models (fast, precise, and strict) were added, with the default being /fp:precise. In many ways, /Op- is more like /fp:fast than /fp:precise, so to get the default behavior from VS2003, /fp:fast should be used. But /fp:fast in VC++ 8.0 will not always exactly match /Op- from VC++ 7.1.
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Article ID: 958603 - Last Review: October 9, 2008 - Revision: 1.0