Advice about /usr/ports/math/gmp

John Marino at
Tue Jan 7 02:11:56 UTC 2014

On 1/7/2014 01:02, Matthew Rezny wrote:
>> We are about to release GMP 5.2.
>> We have been forced to add three FreeBSD-related items to the releases
>> notes:
>>   * This release will not work on FreeBSD/amd64 7.x, 8.x or 9 series
>>     before 9.3 with a Haswell CPU or any other CPU which supports the
>>     BMI2 instructions.  The reason is that the FreeBSD m4 command is
>> not correctly implemented.  (Workaround: Use an older GMP release, or
>>     install GNU m4 from /usr/ports and tell GMP to use it.)
>>   * This release will not work on FreeBSD/amd64 before version 10
>> using the 32-bit ABI.  The reason is broken limits.h and broken
>> dynamic linking.  (Workaround: Use an older GMP release if using the
>> 32-bit ABI on these FreeBSD releases is important.)
>>   * This release will not work on FreeBSD/amd64 10.0 using the 32-bit
>>     ABI.  The reason is bugs in the compiler 'clang'.  (Workaround:
>>     Compiling gcc from /usr/ports might work, except that gcc depends
>> on GMP; we have not been able to test that workaround since
>>     FreeBSD/i386 10.0 does not work for us under KVM or Xen.)
>> The first item is a show-stopper.  It would be possible to implement a
>> workaround in GMP.  We choose not to do that since (1) we adviced the
>> FreeBSD project two years ago the m4 bug, and FreeBSD chose to make 4
>> releases without fixing m4, and (2) the fix is ugly, and (3) our use
>> of m4 which triggers the bug is actually part of a workaround for a
>> broken assembler (to much complexity to maintain workarounds for
>> workarounds).
>> The second item should not affect /usr/ports builds since they would
>> use the default 64-bit ABI on amd64 machines.
>> The third item is a show-stopper until clang is fixed.  We have not
>> been able to isolate this problem due to lack of time and due to a
>> deeply malfunctioning filesystem of FreeBSD/i386 under KVM and
>> Xen+NetBSD.  We don't have any more information about these bugs.
>> We do not plan to implement workarounds for the above bugs for GMP
>> 5.2.x for any x.  I would advice that you stick with GMP 5.1.3.
>> Torbjörn
>> Please encrypt, key id 0xC8601622
> So, being that you have provided essentially zero information on the
> alleged bugs, what is the advice you are purporting to provide? The
> subject is "advice about gmp" but the only thing I see that would
> qualify as advice is "don't upgrade".
> I do have a bit of advice for you: learn the difference between the
> words advise (verb) and advice (noun). Twice in the body you use advice
> where only advise makes sense. Advice is what you give, advise is the
> process of giving it. Being that advice is a noun, adviced isn't even a
> valid word. Yet another related word is advisory, which means to provide
> notification but not necessary advice. The subject line would be
> congruent with the content if it were "advisory about gmp".
> Yes this reply is a total waste of time as was the original.
> Just replying in kind dear troll.

whoa - this is pretty harsh if you assume Torbjorn was sincere to begin
with, and I haven't seen anything that indicates he wasn't.  It's pretty
much the definition of "no good deed goes unpunished".

Yes, the criticism of "well, what exactly is wrong?" is valid, but the
guy did write a couple of PRs, so calling him a troll is way out of
line.  If it was planning on providing more information, I don't expect
he will now.


More information about the freebsd-ports mailing list