Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 8th May 2009 10:03 UTC, submitted by Joel Dahl
FreeBSD After having released FreeBSD 7.2 just a few days ago, the FreeBSD project now sends out a new quarterly status report, with information about development projects in progress. This report contains news on Clang replacing GCC, VirtualBox improvements, upcoming support for an NVIDIA 64-bit driver, some DTrace news, and more.
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Nvidia 64 support!
by hollovoid on Fri 8th May 2009 11:45 UTC
hollovoid
Member since:
2005-09-21

YES! I cant wait until this comes into fruition, and I will be checking it out!

Reply Score: 2

RE: Nvidia 64 support!
by sean on Fri 8th May 2009 20:36 UTC in reply to "Nvidia 64 support!"
sean Member since:
2005-06-29
RE[2]: Nvidia 64 support!
by hollovoid on Fri 8th May 2009 23:23 UTC in reply to "RE: Nvidia 64 support!"
hollovoid Member since:
2005-09-21

Just saw that actually, its good to see nvidia was actually interested in making it happen and not just paying lip service.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Nvidia 64 support!
by gilboa on Sun 10th May 2009 17:52 UTC in reply to "Nvidia 64 support!"
gilboa Member since:
2005-07-06

... Indeed.
Now if only they can add 64bit Linux binary support (and finish the FreeBSD qemu-kvm port), FreeBSD might find a place along side Linux on my main workstation. (As opposed to a play-testing VM under qemu-kvm)

- Gilboa

Reply Score: 2

Comment by kaiwai
by kaiwai on Fri 8th May 2009 12:52 UTC
kaiwai
Member since:
2005-07-06

Step aside GCC, LLVM has a new backer ;) I've just had a look at FreeBSD throwing their weight behind it; couple that with Adobe and Apple - things are getting really interesting in the unsexy world of compilers ;) I wondering whether we'll see more people jump on the LLVM bandwagon - Linux? maybe even OpenSolaris? lots of cool stuff on the burner.

The mmap() extensions look cool, hopefully they get back on track with their scalability/smp effort given the rise of multi-core, the return of hyper-threading and rise of large multi-processor/multi-core monsters.

Reply Score: 4

Why is LLVM cool?
by dagw on Fri 8th May 2009 14:31 UTC in reply to "Comment by kaiwai"
dagw Member since:
2005-07-06

Can someone 'sell' me on LLVM? I've been reading about it for a while and gather that it is something that has the potential to be awesome, but I've never really understood why. Why should I as a Linux and BSD user and casual C++ developer be excited by LLVM? In what way is it better than gcc?

Reply Score: 2

RE: Why is LLVM cool?
by Oliver on Fri 8th May 2009 14:59 UTC in reply to "Why is LLVM cool?"
Oliver Member since:
2006-07-15

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LLVM

The Wikipedia article gives a rather good impression about the project and its goals.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Why is LLVM cool?
by foldingstock on Fri 8th May 2009 14:59 UTC in reply to "Why is LLVM cool?"
foldingstock Member since:
2008-10-30

A compilation strategy designed to enable effective program optimization across the entire lifetime of a program. LLVM supports effective optimization at compile time, link-time (particularly interprocedural), run-time and offline (i.e., after software is installed), while remaining transparent to developers and maintaining compatibility with existing build scripts.

Source: http://llvm.org/

If that isn't reason enough to be excited, please turn in your geek card now. ;)

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Why is LLVM cool?
by silix on Fri 8th May 2009 15:35 UTC in reply to "RE: Why is LLVM cool?"
silix Member since:
2006-03-01

A compilation strategy designed to enable effective program optimization across the entire lifetime of a program. LLVM supports effective optimization at compile time, link-time (particularly interprocedural), run-time and offline (i.e., after software is installed), while remaining transparent to developers and maintaining compatibility with existing build scripts.

Source: http://llvm.org/

If that isn't reason enough to be excited, please turn in your geek card now. ;)


and don't forget:
a) llvm's and clang's framework - like architecture that can be leveraged at the IDE level to provide much better integration for code checking, highlighting, refactoring and profiling
(ie the IDE could use the actual language front end -or the evaluation and AST- creation functions the language frontend too, uses- instead of a surrogate parser - OTOH the language frontend could update the actual AST in real time while user is typing)
b) llvm's common cross - language IR and type system, and the inter-assembly optimizations that this makes possible...
;)

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Why is LLVM cool?
by Hypnos on Fri 8th May 2009 16:00 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Why is LLVM cool?"
Hypnos Member since:
2008-11-19

Etoile ( http://www.etoileos.com ) is using the second feature to create an object system that is language-agnostic. This allows Smalltalk to use classes from C-based libraries bound to Objective-C (and reference their instances) -- and vice versa.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Why is LLVM cool?
by Valhalla on Fri 8th May 2009 15:43 UTC in reply to "Why is LLVM cool?"
Valhalla Member since:
2006-01-24

dagw wrote:
-"Why should I as a Linux and BSD user and casual C++ developer be excited by LLVM? In what way is it better than gcc?"

Well, unlike GCC which has been around for ages, LLVM which started around 2000 is more modern in it's overall design and as such I gather it's alot easier to try out/implement different optimizations (aswell as other architectural improvements). As for the current difference between the compilers, I've done some tests using the llvm-gcc-frontend and gcc and in the last two versions I've tried (4.3-4.4 vs 2.4-2.5) gcc still generates faster code (I used some of the shootout examples: nbody, fannkuch etc and also zlib). Also, I used '-march=native -o3 -fomit-frame-pointer -mfpmath=sse -msse3' for my tests, other optimization levels/options might have rendered different results. If anyone has other tests/results/options I'm very interested!

However which one is on top in code speed at any given time is not the important thing here in my opinion, instead it is the fact that we got healthy competition in the open source compiler field. This will benefit end users of both compilers. And please let's not drag this down to licence advocacy and instead stick to the technical pro's and con's.

Edited 2009-05-08 15:44 UTC

Reply Score: 4

RE: Comment by kaiwai
by vivainio on Fri 8th May 2009 14:31 UTC in reply to "Comment by kaiwai"
vivainio Member since:
2008-12-26

I wondering whether we'll see more people jump on the LLVM bandwagon - Linux? maybe even OpenSolaris? lots of cool stuff on the burner.


Python seems to be entering the game with this Google project:

http://code.google.com/p/unladen-swallow/wiki/ProjectPlan

Reply Score: 1

RE: Comment by kaiwai
by Bill Shooter of Bul on Fri 8th May 2009 14:55 UTC in reply to "Comment by kaiwai"
Bill Shooter of Bul Member since:
2006-07-14

things are getting really interesting in the unsexy world of compilers ;)


What? Compiler weren't sexy? I didn't get that memo.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Comment by kaiwai
by JoeBuck on Fri 8th May 2009 17:03 UTC in reply to "Comment by kaiwai"
JoeBuck Member since:
2006-01-11

Clang is already usable and competitive for C, but they are far away from having a usable C++ front end. Check out

http://clang.llvm.org/cxx_status.html

These are not obscure features that are missing; there are major holes. It's going to be several person-years of intensive work. And then they'll still rely on the GNU libstdc++.

In the meantime, it appears Apple is using a hybrid approach, with the GCC front ends and the LLVM back end. It will take them years to be GNU-free.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Comment by kaiwai
by kaiwai on Sat 9th May 2009 05:17 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by kaiwai"
kaiwai Member since:
2005-07-06

Clang is already usable and competitive for C, but they are far away from having a usable C++ front end. Check out

http://clang.llvm.org/cxx_status.html

These are not obscure features that are missing; there are major holes. It's going to be several person-years of intensive work. And then they'll still rely on the GNU libstdc++.

In the meantime, it appears Apple is using a hybrid approach, with the GCC front ends and the LLVM back end. It will take them years to be GNU-free.


You do realise that the status can be (and most likely) out of date? you also realise that there is a heck of alot of working going on outside that of the community which will be merged at a later date?

Yes, there is still alot of work to be done but realise that there are now going to be more programmers jumping onboard and you'll find that Clang will be feature complete quicker than you expected.

Reply Score: 2

VirtualBox port
by kill on Fri 8th May 2009 14:29 UTC
kill
Member since:
2005-11-03

...now THIS is one of what I've been waiting to see. Great job!

Reply Score: 4

LLVM Bitcode format
by SamuraiCrow on Fri 8th May 2009 22:15 UTC
SamuraiCrow
Member since:
2005-11-19

The LLVM bitcode format, assuming you don't use conditional compilation for your platform specifics nor your compiler implementation using macros rather than functions for the sizeof() and offsetof(), can generate code for any supported processor regardless of what processor it was compiled on. This means that packages compiled on Intels can be installed to PowerPC or ARM without the overhead of a separate binary. It also opens the door to closed-source software on POSIX platforms. With some work it even means that packagers will be able to create 64-bit apps from 32-bit packages.

For details see the -march flag on the LLC command. http://llvm.org/cmds/llc.html .

That VirtualBox port may not be necessary for long unless you're running non-posix code.

Reply Score: 2

if Oracle bork OpenSolaris...
by chekr on Sat 9th May 2009 12:46 UTC
chekr
Member since:
2005-11-05

Looking at the way FreeBSD is going it is looking like i will find a nice platform in the event that Oracle end up borking OpenSolaris

Reply Score: 2

Comment by factotum218
by factotum218 on Mon 11th May 2009 20:05 UTC
factotum218
Member since:
2007-03-20

Awesomeness ensues!
I've been praying for a port of virtualbox to make the switch. Now my problem is that I've moved on to a laptop, away from my desktop system. Gardangit!!
Ah well, if and when I get another table-top system FreeBSD is going on that bugger. I ran the 5.x branch and absolutely loved it as a server and an every day system.

Reply Score: 1

qunying
Member since:
2008-06-04

It seems BSD people does not care others. It always insist to occupy one primary partition without any real reason. My machine has a few OSes installed already and the free spaces are only at logical partitions, hmm, the refusal to address this problem has blocked lot of potential users. I am not sure how difficult it is, but from my understanding of partitions, it should not be that difficult given the capability of BSD people.

Reply Score: 1