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Date: Mon, 2 Jul 2018 10:00:11 -0600
From: Assaf Gordon <assafgordon@...il.com>
To: musl@...ts.openwall.com, Markus Wichmann <nullplan@....net>
Subject: Re: future of compiler wrappers

Hello,

On 02/07/18 09:28 AM, Markus Wichmann wrote:
> On Sun, Jul 01, 2018 at 08:11:50PM -0400, Rich Felker wrote:
>> [...] I expressed a sentiment that the compiler wrapper scripts tend to
>> reflect badly on musl, and that I'd really rather not keep maintaining
>> them but pass maintainership of them off to someone else as a separate
>> project for users who still want to use them. [...]
> 
> By all means, nuke them. Cross-compilers are the way to go in OS
> development, as well, and pretty much for the same reason: You want to
> insulate your compilate from the host environment. So yes, in the words
> of William Shatner: Let them die!

A slightly different POV, as someone who is not very familiar with
the nitty-gritty of cross-compliation setup:

The current setup of having "musl-gcc" with a simple "make install"
is invaluable for testing various programs for portability,
i.e. it is a clean and easy way to build programs against a different 
libc, even if the host is using glibc.
As a secondary bonus, it also allows building static binaries very easily.

Now that is of course the simple case, and I'm only using it on x86-64,
but I'm using it alot. I don't know how mips/ppcs and/or
cross-compliation complicate things (I understand that they do...).

If musl-gcc is gone, I'd guess the next best (easiest) thing is
running alpine linux in docker / VM and build locally there?
Still not very complicated, but seems like an order of magnitude
more demanding than having "musl-gcc".

There is ELLCC, but it's been almost a year since the last release -
is it being actively maintained? even if so, it requires a heavy 
compilation phase to setup everything.


If "musl-gcc" s relegated to an external package/repository
but is still easy to install - great. But if it is completely
removed or abandoned, it would be missed... by me at least.


I'm sadly not an expert enough on compilers or cross-compliations
to maintain it, but I can help with automated testing and bug reporting
if it becomes a separate package.

regards,
  - gordon








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