Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 26th Oct 2010 20:36 UTC, submitted by tyrione
Linux Clang can build a kernel now. "The kernel can successfully boot to runlevel 5 (aka X + networking) on the Macbook, both on bare metal and in Qemu. The kernel can successfully boot to runlevel 3 on a secondary test machine, a microATX desktop box (Intel Atom). I haven't tried to start X on this box yet. The kernel can self-host; I am currently running a 'fourth generation' self-hosted Linux kernel built by a 'fourth generation' Clang."
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RE[2]: What is Clang?
by kaiwai on Wed 27th Oct 2010 07:55 UTC in reply to "RE: What is Clang?"
kaiwai
Member since:
2005-07-06

LLVM is part of a compiler infrastructure which works like that

front-end (llvm-gcc, dragonegg, clang) --> Intermediate form (LLVM optimize this) --> Assembly code (x86, arm ..)

LLVM was started as a university research project, Apple then funded this because the switch from GPLv2 to GPLv3 in the gcc project.

The main benefits of llvm for now is the very fast compilation speed (15min for the kernel) and the error reporting which is excellent.


It had less to do with the move from GPL2 to GPL3, it had to do with Apple wanting heavier integration between the compiler and the IDE so that they could provide the sort of debugging that one see's in the likes of Visual Studio. That sort of debugging needs heavy integration between the two and unfortunately it would be a violation of the GPL licence to which GCC is licenced under if Apple linked their proprietary application to GCC.

There are a load of other benefits that have been mentioned in previous conferences they've held - so it is more than just a matter of simply a response to GCC moving from GPL2 to GPL3. On a side note, there has always been a matter of friction between GCC maintainers and Apple in regards to how changes were merged back in. Now that Apple controls the development of LLVM it means it gives them more freedom or when and how they merge changes.

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