x86 generally refers to definition #2 below; however, the term may also be used to differentiate 32-bit hardware and software from their 64-bit counterparts in Windows PCs (see x64
). See Program Files x86
The world's predominant personal computer CPU platform. Used in Windows and Linux PCs, Macs and Chromebooks, the x86 line was developed by Intel and includes the Core, Xeon, Pentium, Atom and earlier 286, 386 and 486 models (hence, the "86").
AMD is also a manufacturer of x86 CPUs with brands such as Athlon, Sempron and Opteron. Although Intel and AMD are the primary sources, x86 chips are made by others, and x86 CPUs are used in embedded systems, not just desktop and laptop computers. See x86 compatible
, x86 chip platform
and embedded system
The x86 architecture, which has been enhanced numerous times, comes from the Intel 8088, the CPU in the first IBM PC in 1981. The 8088 was a slower version of the 8086, which begat the 80186, 286, 386, 486, Pentium and subsequent CPU families. See 8088
, Intel Core