Is PIII an i686?

Robert Cates robert at
Sun Jun 10 12:11:14 UTC 2007

stan wrote:
> On Thu, 07 Jun 2007 12:12:38 -0700
> "Knute Johnson" <knute at> wrote:
>> I've got a Pentium 3 600mhz computer.  Is the P3 chip an i686?  It 
>> won't run the F7 i686 Live CD.  It won't run the i386 boot.iso 
>> either.
>> Thanks,
> if it already has a version of linux on it you can run uname -m to find
> out.
Actually, the i686 is just more of a virtual identity/nomenclature.  
Things (the numbering series) sort of stopped when Intel more-or-less 
had to start giving their new CPUs names instead of numbers (e.g. i386, 
i486, i586, etc.).  Intel tried to trademark the "i486" but got turned 
down because it was decided you can't trademark numbers.  But for us to 
easily keep the new CPU classes straight, we associated the first 
Pentium (the follow-up to the i486 class of CPU) with what would have 
then been the i586, the Pentium II with the i686, the Pentium 3 with the 
i786 and now the newest Pentium 4 would/should be at the i886 level, but 
things have pretty much stopped at the i686 (for some reason).

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