FreeBSD Status Report January-March 2009

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.

The most interesting bit in this status report is of course the progress made on replacing GCC with Clang, a compiler front-end for C, C++, and Objective-C which uses LLVM as its backend. Despite progress being made, Clang isn’t quite there yet to replace GCC for FreeBSD. “The last 3-4 months we’ve been working together with the LLVM developers to discuss any bugs and issues we are experiencing with their Clang compiler frontend. The FreeBSD project is looking at the possibility to replace GCC with Clang as a system compiler,” the status report reads, “It can compile 99% of the FreeBSD world and can compile booting kernel on i386/amd64 but it still contains bugs and its C++ support is still immature.”

They say that there currently are some blocker bugs, but that the LLVM developers are very helpful in trying to fix the bugs found by the FreeBSD team.

Another interesting tidbit is the port of VirtualBox to FreeBSD. “6 Days was needed to get virtualbox to start with over 20 patches. We’d like to say thanks to Alexander Eichner all vbox developers, Gustau Perez and Ulf Lilleengen. If you like to play with the current port you can checkout the port here.”

Be sure to take a look at the status report, there’s some interesting stuff in there.


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