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FreeBSD Removes GCC From Default Base System

Unknown Lamer posted about a year ago | from the autoconf-revival dept.

BSD 333

An anonymous reader writes "With the LLVM/Clang migration, FreeBSD developers have now disabled building GCC and the GNU C++ standard library (libstdc++) as part of the FreeBSD base system. GCC and libstdc++ have been superseded by LLVM's Clang and libc++, respectively, on primary architectures for FreeBSD 10.0." You can still flip a few switches to get GCC, but the system compiler will still be clang. Update: 09/11 14:50 GMT by U L : Reader Noryungi noted that the What's Cooking for FreeBSD 10 page is also worth a look, adding "I have to say, this is shaping up to be a very interesting release. Bhyve [the BSD hypervisor], in particular, sounds very promising."

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Oblig, appropriate XKCD (5, Funny)

PSVMOrnot (885854) | about a year ago | (#44819053)

"the system compiler will still be clang"

Or the Onionequse version: FreeBSD's move to revolutionary new swording system [subutai.mn] adds a whole new meaning to compiling [xkcd.com]

Just one question (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819063)

WHY?

Re:Just one question (5, Informative)

Lendrick (314723) | about a year ago | (#44819109)

See this link for an explanation:

http://unix.stackexchange.com/questions/49906/why-is-freebsd-deprecating-gcc-in-favor-of-clang-llvm/49970#49970 [stackexchange.com]

In short, mostly it's due to FreeBSD's issues with the GPL, not all of which are purely philosophical (it affects their funding, for one thing). On the other hand, if you don't have a beef with the GPL, it's probably best to stick with GCC, which produces more performant code.

Re:Just one question (1)

kthreadd (1558445) | about a year ago | (#44819155)

Especially GPLv3 which they don't want to include in their base OS. Ports are fine thouh since they are not part of the operating system itself. GPLv2 was never a problem.

Re:Just one question (1)

rubycodez (864176) | about a year ago | (#44820151)

GPL2 was also a problem, that was the current license when the various BSD started to explore alternate compilers. The BSD want the license for all wares in the core install to be BSD

Re:Just one question (-1, Flamebait)

HornWumpus (783565) | about a year ago | (#44819219)

Are you paid by the letter? Never say/write 'more performant' it makes you look like a douche. Say 'faster'.

Re:Just one question (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819247)

Sorry, but it's you that looks like a douche.

Re:Just one question (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819389)

I know you are but what am I?

Re:Just one question (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819543)

For once, that happens to be the perfect riposte.

Re: Just one question (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819645)

Your MOM is a riposte

Re: Just one question (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819815)

And a more performant one at that.

Re:Just one question (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819723)

Talking to yourself again, Anonymous Coward?

Re:Just one question (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819419)

I'd have to agree with the "anti-performant" sentiment. It isn't cromulent to say "performant" if don't want to sound like a douche. It makes it seem like you're trying to embiggen yourself.

Re:Just one question (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819279)

using less memory is also more performant, or needing less disk writes, etc.

Re:Just one question (1)

HornWumpus (783565) | about a year ago | (#44819479)

Yet another reason not to say 'performant', it's ambiguous.

Re:Just one question (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819701)

It is not as vague or ambiguous as saying "better," so I guess we should have twice the vitriol for anyone who says something is better?

Re:Just one question (2)

HornWumpus (783565) | about a year ago | (#44819765)

It's exactly as vague and ambiguous as 'better', while sounding pseudo technical. Something a PHB would parrot.

Re:Just one question (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44820143)

No that's just wrong. Better could also mean things like cheaper, less side-effects, doesn't kill puppies, etc. "Performant" limits the betterness to only performance factors.

Re:Just one question (1)

pipatron (966506) | about a year ago | (#44819293)

Execution speed is not necessarily the only metric used to judge a compiler. As a developer for embedded platforms I mostly look at code size, and you could also judge it on how well it handles various CPU architecture varieties.

Then again, your argument still stands. He could've written "better". ;)

Re:Just one question (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819451)

There are many performance-related measures of a compiler beyond speed like memory use or size of the binary.

Re:Just one question (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819587)

Are you paid by the letter? Never say/write 'more performant' it makes you look like a douche. Say 'faster'.

"more performancy"
"more performanceish"
"more performanceabilistic"

two dictionaries say "no such word" (1, Insightful)

raymorris (2726007) | about a year ago | (#44820007)

The two dictionaries I checked, including Merriam-Webster, don't list "performant" as a word.

Trying so hard to use "big words" that you resort to using non-words that sound big = douche. Of course "douche" is actually a word.

Re:Just one question (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819179)

For many reasons.

Clang is faster
Clang produces faster code
Clang's license is BSD (and hence more in line with FreeBSD's philosophy)
Clang has built in static analysis tools
Clang's error messages are easier to understand than gcc's
Clang has better support for C++11 than gcc
Clang's code base is much less convoluted than gcc's, and easier to work on
Clang's code base is more modular, which allows you to easily use separate stages of the compiler in other tools
Probably a bunch of reasons I've forgotten too

The real question is actually, why are so many people stubbornly sticking to gcc when clang has surpassed it in pretty much every way.

Re:Just one question (1, Interesting)

kthreadd (1558445) | about a year ago | (#44819235)

Clang is faster
Clang produces faster code

Really?

Clang has better support for C++11 than gcc

They had almost equal support for C++11 when I check earlier this year.

Clang's code base is much less convoluted than gcc's, and easier to work on
Clang's code base is more modular, which allows you to easily use separate stages of the compiler in other tools

I think that depends on the reader.

The real question is actually, why are so many people stubbornly sticking to gcc when clang has surpassed it in pretty much every way.

Because it's a good compiler. Both gcc and clang are good compilers. They didn't stop developing gcc just because clang came around and started to make progress.

Re:Just one question (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819817)

I think that depends on the reader.

Not really actually. RMS actually even has admitted in emails that the lack of modularity, and rather spaghettish code in gcc is a deliberate attempt to make it hard for tools authors to integrate it, because he feared that a modular compiler would easily be used to make closed IDEs.

Re:Just one question (1)

kthreadd (1558445) | about a year ago | (#44820175)

I've not had that experience when reading the gcc source code. Maybe that used to be the case, gcc has been around for some time.

Clang is Slower (4, Informative)

tuppe666 (904118) | about a year ago | (#44819301)

For many reasons.

Clang is faster...

No its slower. Phoronix benchmark GCC vs Clang all the time. http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page=article&item=llvm_clang33_3way&num=1 [phoronix.com]

Re:Clang is Slower (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819505)

No its slower. Phoronix benchmark GCC vs Clang all the time. http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page=article&item=llvm_clang33_3way&num=1 [phoronix.com] [phoronix.com]

Interesting that they use -O3, which is not clang's fastest optimisation setting (which is -Ofast). Also, they are comparing the speed of the compiled code (which was my second point, that it produces faster code), not the speed of the compiler. Clang is currently (in my brief tests) roughly 4 times faster (as in, the compiler's exception time is 4 times faster) than gcc at compiling C, and 2 times faster than gcc at compiling C++ when set to -O0.

Re:Clang is Slower (1)

gnasher719 (869701) | about a year ago | (#44819507)

No its slower. Phoronix benchmark GCC vs Clang all the time.

The question is: Do GCC and Clang benchmark Phoronix?

As a long time Clang user, I never heard of Phoronix. Maybe it's different with gcc users. Maybe gcc develops use this Phoronix benchmark to drive their software and optimisation development.

Re:Clang is Slower (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819531)

Phoronix are also stunningly incompetent and it's a mystery why anybody would listen to a damn thing they say.

Re:Clang is Slower (1)

gcore (748374) | about a year ago | (#44819549)

Considering how bad the articles and journalism is, perhaps you shouldn't put too much faith in the benchmarks of Phoronix.

Re:Clang is Slower (1)

UnknowingFool (672806) | about a year ago | (#44819579)

Define "all the time". In the article you linked, GCC was slightly faster in most tests than Clang especially when it came to OpenMP however it didn't beat it in all tests. The performance gaps in most tests were small except when it came to OpenMP which Clang does not support.

Re:Clang is Slower (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819905)

The performance gaps in most tests were small except when it came to OpenMP which Clang does not support.

Yet [openmp.org]

Re:Clang is Slower (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819615)

Actually, my bad, they do benchmark the speed of the compiler there as well as the speed of the code it produces. Their results are that clang runs significantly faster. You're wrong, and your own benchmark even says you are.

Re:Clang is Slower (5, Informative)

tlhIngan (30335) | about a year ago | (#44820071)

No its slower. Phoronix benchmark GCC vs Clang all the time. http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page=article&item=llvm_clang33_3way&num=1 [phoronix.com]

Except FreeBSD is not using GCC 4.8. They're using GCC 4.2.1, the last version that was GPLv2.

While the current version of GCC may be faster than Clang/LLVM, that doesn't mean Clang/LLVM isn't faster than what is in use now, so the switch may even boost performance compared to the ancient version of GCC in use.

Re:Just one question (2)

1s44c (552956) | about a year ago | (#44819751)

The real question is actually, why are so many people stubbornly sticking to gcc when clang has surpassed it in pretty much every way.

I'm all for replacing GCC.
Does clang handle all the GCC extensions to C yet? Or is the (better) approach of getting rid of them being taken instead? The last I heard it was still a bit of a mess.

Re:Just one question (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44820057)

Does clang handle all the GCC extensions to C yet?

Clang Extensions [llvm.org]

Re:Just one question (1)

jellomizer (103300) | about a year ago | (#44820021)

Because RMS made it!!!

I think it is most likely due to the large set of OpenSource Apps written in GCC and people really don't want to risk trying a different compiler.

Re:Just one question (5, Informative)

lactose99 (71132) | about a year ago | (#44819185)

Licensing.

GCC in the FreeBSD base is stuck at v4.2.1 as that was the last version licensed under the GPLv2. As this is about 7 years old by GCC standards a newer compiler is a welcomed change and since CLANG is BSD-licensed it is more in line with the project's goals anyway.

Re:Just one question (3, Insightful)

1s44c (552956) | about a year ago | (#44819707)

Because GCC is a total mess internally and Clang/LLVM is neat, clean, maintainable, adjustable.

GCC is a dead end. LLVM is the future.

Re:Just one question (1)

DuckDodgers (541817) | about a year ago | (#44819945)

I'm fuzzy on licensing. I know you can take FreeBSD and Clang/LLVM and make a proprietary product out of it. But can you fork them and release your fork under the GPLv3?

Maybe in all seriousness the best option for the Free Software Foundation and GNU Project in a few years would just be to make a GPLv3 fork of the most recent LLVM. The Phoronix benchmark put highly optimized GCC code as slightly faster than optimized LLVM code in a few cases, but in return for dramatically slower compile times. You're already working with C and C++, is a 4% performance improvement worth losing an extra few hours to week waiting for your compiler to finish?

Re:Just one question (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819869)

WHY?

Why not?

can it build the linux kernel? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819079)

Can LLVM's Clang build the Linux kernel and QT/KDE?

I would love to have a Linux system,(not android), completely free of GNU.

Re:can it build the linux kernel? (1)

Lendrick (314723) | about a year ago | (#44819125)

Good luck with that. If you replace the (GPL'ed) Linux kernel, then it's not Linux anymore.

Re:can it build the linux kernel? (3, Insightful)

kthreadd (1558445) | about a year ago | (#44819171)

The Linux kernel itself is not GNU. Removing all GNU software will not remove the kernel.

Re:can it build the linux kernel? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819215)

He said GNU, not GPL.

Re:can it build the linux kernel? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819291)

That's why it's called GNU/Linux, not just Linux.

Re:can it build the linux kernel? (-1, Offtopic)

jamstar7 (694492) | about a year ago | (#44819359)

Thank you, RMS. Now go take a shower already.

Re:can it build the linux kernel? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44820067)

Why are you so rude to RMS? What have you done to make the world a better place? Now get off my lawn you little twit.

Re:can it build the linux kernel? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819649)

No, the Linux kernel is not called GNU/Linux.

Re:can it build the linux kernel? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819825)

Wait a minute... if you say "Linux kernel" that's like saying "kernel kernel". You should have said "No, Linux is not called GNU/Linux" or, more accurately, "No, Linux in GNU/Linux is not called GNU/Linux."

Re:can it build the linux kernel? (1)

Chrisq (894406) | about a year ago | (#44819173)

I would love to have a Linux system,(not android), completely free of GNU.

That's a bit like wanting a Windows 8 system completely free of Microsoft licensing ... not going to happen

Re:can it build the linux kernel? (1)

wagnerrp (1305589) | about a year ago | (#44819421)

GNU the operating system, not GNU the public license...

Re:can it build the linux kernel? (1, Insightful)

jedidiah (1196) | about a year ago | (#44819591)

You are trying to flee the spirit of the FSF in Linux.

It's much like trying to avoid the lingering legacy of DOS in Windows.

If you are a wannabe software Robber Baron, then Linux just isn't for you. Finally after all this time the anti-GPL crowd have their own compiler and they're using it. No big surprise there.

Re:can it build the linux kernel? (1)

dosius (230542) | about a year ago | (#44819203)

You'd want another libc too, like MUSL [musl-libc.org] .

Re:can it build the linux kernel? (2)

kthreadd (1558445) | about a year ago | (#44819205)

Can LLVM's Clang build the Linux kernel and QT/KDE?

They are getting close to building the Linux kernel according to these slides [linuxfoundation.org] . Qt has been able to use Clang for a long time now, but I don't know about the entire KDE.

Re:can it build the linux kernel? (1)

andreicristianpetcu (1964402) | about a year ago | (#44819393)

Why? The GPL code is the biggest technological common pool ever. I love the GNU project! The weak copyleft licenses are not a common pool. They are scattered projects from a legal point of view. Look what happened to khtml and kjs they helped build Safari which is proprietary.

Re:can it build the linux kernel? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819567)

Why on earth would you want a "common pool"? If anything, I'd be more likely to avoid such a thing.

And yes, it's terrible what happened to khtml, it got turned into the world's most popular open HTML engine. Just think, if it had been GPL, it could have remained obscure and unused forever!

Re:can it build the linux kernel? (2)

andreicristianpetcu (1964402) | about a year ago | (#44819681)

They broke it of from the community. They made changes but they did not commit the diffs. This after huge pressure from KDE devs. I prefere to have my code eaten up by other GPL projects and remain free forever than get assimilated in Apple's pretty iShit.

Re: can it build the linux kernel? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819781)

That iShit turned into Chrome and as far as I know both WebKit and Blink is free software.

Re: can it build the linux kernel? (1)

andreicristianpetcu (1964402) | about a year ago | (#44820069)

Chromium is free software. Google Chrome and Safari are not. If Google did not want to publish Chromium, it did not. The LGPL license is weak copyleft not strong copyleft.

Re:can it build the linux kernel? (3, Insightful)

santax (1541065) | about a year ago | (#44820131)

Which I and probably about every other BSD-style coder respects. However, this debate is really old. I think there is something to be said for both license-models and it is good they both exist. I however do feel that true free code, is well... really free. Also to be used without giving the source. It's a choice I made and I can perfectly understand why people don't want to have Big Ol' Apple stealing their stuff and making heaps of money from it. But, I can also understand why people want to really give the code away. It's all about perspective and there is no right or wrong here. It all depends on the personal views of the coder/owner of the code and what that person/org wants to let others do with their code. BSD has the advantage that it can become closed source. That makes it easier to generate profit, but also (especially in the commercial world) there are other good reasons why people want to protect their product. GPL has the advantage that every time someone uses your code, that code will become available also. Just don't ever think that because your code is GPL'd, no one will dare to use it in close source. As much as I would love such a world, that would be very naive.

Re:can it build the linux kernel? (1)

NatasRevol (731260) | about a year ago | (#44819783)

Not exactly Safari, but pretty much what khtml became. And it's still open source. From Apple.

http://opensource.apple.com/source/WebKit/WebKit-7536.25/ [apple.com]

Re:can it build the linux kernel? (1)

andreicristianpetcu (1964402) | about a year ago | (#44820081)

Apple is the bully who took your 3 lunch sandwiches, added ketchup to one of them and gave it back to you and made you say "thank you sir for the ketchup".

Re:can it build the linux kernel? (1)

NatasRevol (731260) | about a year ago | (#44820187)

So staying open source is being a bully now?
Vastly improving a product is just 'adding ketchup' now?

Moron.

Re:can it build the linux kernel? (1)

andreicristianpetcu (1964402) | about a year ago | (#44819449)

Also, GPL code will always be ahead of weak copyleft code. Take Libre Office vs Open Office. Libre Office can take code from Open Office but OO can't take code form LO. Code that LO takes from OO will always be free.

Re:can it build the linux kernel? (1)

tlhIngan (30335) | about a year ago | (#44819943)

Also, GPL code will always be ahead of weak copyleft code. Take Libre Office vs Open Office. Libre Office can take code from Open Office but OO can't take code form LO. Code that LO takes from OO will always be free.

And that is one of the worst justifications ever. In fact, it's so bad, it lends credence to the "GPL is viral" belief - because the GPL can take and take and take, and not give back (which one could argue is against the SPIRIT of FOSS - that one shares so everyone benefits). Yes, it's legal, just TiVoization and GPLv2 is legal, but spiritually, it really reeks, especially when GPL advocates claim moral superiority.

Heck, perhaps the biggest problem with BSD is NOT the ability for "software robbers" to take and close the source, but for "software robbers" to take and claim moral superiority that their license "frees" the code (funny how "freeing" or "liberating" the source involves ensuring that it can never get back to the original authors, eh?).

Personally, I use unmodified BSD or GPLv2, because I have objections to the GPLv3 (and no, you can't mix v2-only and v3 code because the GPLv3 can be seen as causing restrictions disallowed by GPLv2. Funny how the champions of Freedom even admit that there are limits to how Free you can be).

Re:can it build the linux kernel? (2)

andreicristianpetcu (1964402) | about a year ago | (#44820169)

BSD think of the freedom of the distributor, the GPL thinks of the freedom of the user. I see myself as a user, you see yourself as a proprietary distributor. BSD code helps build DRMed jails for Sony and Apple. I prefer a license that disallows this. I want to share my code with anyone in the world who does not to build proprietary stuff (for building new software). And share my software with anyone for usage, regardless of the purpose.

More interesting page for FreeBSD 10... (5, Interesting)

Noryungi (70322) | about a year ago | (#44819087)

Try this one: https://wiki.freebsd.org/WhatsNew/FreeBSD10 [freebsd.org]

I have to say, this is shaping up to be a very interesting release. Bhyve, in particular, sounds very promising...

Re:More interesting page for FreeBSD 10... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819207)

Bhyve, in particular, sounds very promising...

And it has quite a catchy name!

Re:More interesting page for FreeBSD 10... (1)

MtHuurne (602934) | about a year ago | (#44819673)

Looking at the logo on their home page [bhyve.org] , I think it's pronounced "bee hive".

Re:More interesting page for FreeBSD 10... (5, Informative)

MatthiasF (1853064) | about a year ago | (#44819621)

I think the updates to ZFS are more impressive. The addition of LZ4 compression (50-80% faster), SSD TRIM support and the new NOP-write that reduces the need to write to compressed disks will all mean commodity hardware SANs running FreeBSD will be able to give the big boys a run for their money.

So, better compression, SSD speed-up and less need to write to changed files, means there will be a huge performance increase.

Re:More interesting page for FreeBSD 10... (2)

SuricouRaven (1897204) | about a year ago | (#44819745)

Can we take drives out yet? ZFS makes it nice and easy to just add a new drive to a storage pool, but taking one out (ie, freeing up port for a larger drive, or turning your 16x1TB drives into 8x2TB drives to reduce the frequency of failures) is a different matter.

Re:More interesting page for FreeBSD 10... (2)

Bengie (1121981) | about a year ago | (#44820119)

Not yet, that requires pointer re-writes, which has been talked about for a long time by the ZFS devs.

Essentially, ZFS does not currently allow data to be moved once written. Supports Delete and Insert, but no Update. A big reason for this is if you move the data, you need to update all points that address that data, and to do so in an atomic way that doesn't leave the system in an unstable state.

Can you imagine (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819151)

A world where we can call it Linux and the nerd who immediately corrects you with GNU/Linux will have to shut up for once?

Re:Can you imagine (1)

wagnerrp (1305589) | about a year ago | (#44819431)

Well there is Android...

Re: Can you imagine (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819651)

GNU/Android if I may

Re: Can you imagine (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819797)

There isn't a single line of GNU code in Android.

Re:Can you imagine (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819669)

And various embedded systems that run a non-GNU libc and userland on top of a linux kernel.

Re:Can you imagine (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819675)

Technically it's called FreeBSD. ;)

Re:Can you imagine (1)

Hypotensive (2836435) | about a year ago | (#44820177)

I can imagine a world where an AC posts shit flamebait in the same thread multiple times trying to pretend that he's different people.

I'd be suspicious (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819231)

How do we know that LLVM/Clang hasn't already been backdoored by the NSA?

Re:I'd be suspicious (1)

kthreadd (1558445) | about a year ago | (#44819261)

By inspecting the source code.

Re:I'd be suspicious (1)

dkleinsc (563838) | about a year ago | (#44819821)

That is insufficient, as Ken Thompson demonstrated decades ago.

Re:I'd be suspicious (1)

philipmather (864521) | about a year ago | (#44819501)

Redundant, keep reading the whole "What's New" page and the conspiracy klaxon attached to your tin-foil hat will go into hyper-overdrive...

"
Support for the RDRAND random number generator

Status:
Committed to -CURRENT, MFC-ed to 9-stable
Author:
Konstantin Belousov
Web:
http://svn.freebsd.org/changeset/base/240135 [freebsd.org]
RDRAND is the new Intel's CPU instruction for accessing its hardware random number generator, also known as the code-name Bull Mountain. It is present in Ivy Bridge and newer CPUs.
" ...although it would seem more likely that Konstantin Belousov would be working for the FSB rather than the NSA really. ;^)

Re:I'd be suspicious (1)

interval1066 (668936) | about a year ago | (#44820009)

Support for the RDRAND random number generator

Now you can go "WHY????"

Re:I'd be suspicious (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819999)

How do we know that LLVM/Clang hasn't already been backdoored by the NSA?

How do we know your mom wasn't backdoored? There could be NSA DNA in you right now!

Netcraft confirms it (0)

Megane (129182) | about a year ago | (#44819233)

It is now official. Netcraft has confirmed: GCC is dying One more crippling bombshell hit the already beleaguered GCC community when IDC confirmed that GCC market share has dropped yet again, now down to less than a fraction of 1 percent of all servers. Coming on the heels of a recent Netcraft survey which plainly states that GCC has lost more market share, this news serves to reinforce what we've known all along. GCC is collapsing in complete disarray, as fittingly exemplified by failing dead last [samag.com] in the recent Sys Admin comprehensive networking test.

You don't need to be the Amazing Kreskin [amazingkreskin.com] to predict GCC's future. The hand writing is on the wall: GCC faces a bleak future. In fact there won't be any future at all for GCC because GCC is dying. Things are looking very bad for GCC. As many of us are already aware, GCC continues to lose market share. Red ink flows like a river of blood.

GCC is most endangered of all in FreeBSD, having lost 93% of its core developers. The sudden and unpleasant departures of long time FreeBSD developers Jordan Hubbard and Mike Smith only serve to underscore the point more clearly. There can no longer be any doubt: GCC is dying.

Let's keep to the facts and look at the numbers.

OpenBSD leader Theo states that there are 7000 users of GCC. How many users of NetBSD are there? Let's see. The number of OpenBSD versus NetBSD posts on Usenet is roughly in ratio of 5 to 1. Therefore there are about 7000/5 = 1400 NetBSD users. BSD/OS posts on Usenet are about half of the volume of NetBSD posts. Therefore there are about 700 users of BSD/OS. A recent article put FreeBSD at about 80 percent of the GCC market. Therefore there are (7000+1400+700)*4 = 36400 FreeBSD users. This is consistent with the number of FreeBSD Usenet posts.

Due to the troubles of Walnut Creek, abysmal sales and so on, FreeBSD went out of business and was taken over by BSDI who sell another troubled OS. Now BSDI is also dead, its corpse turned over to yet another charnel house.

All major surveys show that GCC has steadily declined in market share. GCC is very sick and its long term survival prospects are very dim. If GCC is to survive at all it will be among OS dilettante dabblers. GCC continues to decay. Nothing short of a miracle could save it at this point in time. For all practical purposes, GCC is dead.

Re:Netcraft confirms it (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819429)

FFS if you're going to use that old copypasta, at least make an effort to at least superficially seem coherent and relevant.

I mean stuff like

Due to the troubles of Walnut Creek, abysmal sales and so on, FreeBSD went out of business and was taken over by BSDI who sell another troubled OS. Now BSDI is also dead, its corpse turned over to yet another charnel house."

BSDI? Walnut Creek? OS? You're not even trying.
Score: "-1, Me_Too"

In related news in the real world nobody gave a shit what compiler FreeBSD uses, since it's just used by autistic die-hards who refuses to get on with the program these days.

Re:Netcraft confirms it (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819947)

Jim Clapper, is that you?

Re:Netcraft confirms it (1)

interval1066 (668936) | about a year ago | (#44820031)

OpenBSD leader Theo states that there are 7000 users of GCC.

I'd like to see how de Raadt came up with THAT number. Seems very low to me. Accross the world? Or is that a blanket, unqualified statement? 7K users of GCC? Come on...

can't wait (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819249)

might set up a bsd box once loser gpl shit is exorcized from the system

Good move (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819345)

I'm glad for this move for technical reasons rather than philosophical. Clang produces better warnings and error messages. It is also more fault tolerant and faster. I have almost completely moved to using Clang instead of GCC for my open source projects. It's just a nicer compiler to work with.

Not sure how much of the problem is code and how much is the compiler, but I've found at least one application that will crash when compiled with GCC, but will run smoothly when compiled with Clang. My guess would be there is a code issue involved, or an optimization issue, but I still find it interesting that two compilers passed the same flags produce such different code that one binary works flawlessly and the other regularly crashes.

Re:Good move (1)

bluefoxlucid (723572) | about a year ago | (#44819497)

It's faster because it doesn't support as much optimization. Some analysis simply isn't implemented. That isn't to say it won't be faster when it's on even footing; just that right now huge swaths of algorithms are missing, so the output code doesn't perform as well but it does get produced in much less time.

Re:Good move (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819983)

It actually is somewhat "philosophical."

Due to disagreements with the GPL, especially with revision 3.0 and onwards, they've been shipping GCC 4.2.1 to this day.
It's no surprise that clang would compare far more favourably in terms of bugs, features, and performance, especially when you consider that the former is a relic from at least 6 years ago.

LLVM and GCC have both made enormous strides in that time.

on Single Compilers (2)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | about a year ago | (#44819383)

I don't think I've seen Ken Thompson's Reflections on Trusting Trust come up more in the past decade than it has in the past week. Right now seems like a particularly inauspicious time to switch to a one-compiler-to-rule-them-all strategy.

I'm particularly interested in trying to build the gcc phase-1 bootstrap compiler with llvm to see how that works out (TODO list...).

Re:on Single Compilers (4, Informative)

phoenix_rizzen (256998) | about a year ago | (#44819843)

FreeBSD (and Linux) were already in a "one compiler to rule them all" situation, aka GCC. At least with FreeBSD 9 there were two compilers in the base install (GCC, LLVM), and you have the option of keeping GCC in 10 if you really want.

IOW, you're complaint is baseless and backwards.

Goodbye statist GPL don't let the door hit ya! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819527)

The statist GPL is all but done. The Linux kernel is the last significant project that uses that *terrible* liberty-stealing license and with this new release of FreeBSD is looking set to kick some serious Linux ass!

Re:Goodbye statist GPL don't let the door hit ya! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44819693)

FreeBSD is looking set to kick some serious Linux ass!

Yeah, let me know how that goes!

Re:Goodbye statist GPL don't let the door hit ya! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44820195)

FreeBSD: Core Routers, Netflix, Verisign, ZFS
Linux: Steam, WordPress, I think my data is correct


/Troll
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