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The Digital Alpha was a novel microprocessor architecture that started and ended it's life as a 64-bit clean CPU. It was designed to take the baton from the 32bit systems like the VAX that DEC had been using for fifteen years or so before. The Alpha ran from 1992 until 2004. The generation designation is “EV” (extended VAX). They start with the EV4 and run up until the EV7z. It's about three and a half generations of CPUs.