64-bit time_t on sparc64, epilogue(?)

Garance A Drosihn drosih at rpi.edu
Fri Nov 14 22:24:30 PST 2003

Recently on the freebsd-sparc64 list, it was mentioned that it
would be nice to upgrade time_t on that port to be 64-bit.  It
is pretty obvious (to me at least) that we could bite the bullet
and do it (disruptively) right now.  If we don't, then (IMO) we
pretty much have to wait until the 6.x-branch.

On the plus side for doing it RightNow:
    The amd64 and ia64 ports already have a 64-bit time_t,
        and it would be nice if the sparc64 port did too.
    It will be easier to do it now (when sparc64 has very
        few users), then it will be a few years from now
        (by the time 6.0-release is released).
    Harti Brandt did do a buildworld/installworld of a
        64-bit time_t on sparc64, and it seemed to work
        pretty well once he made it through the install.

On the minus side:
    The sparc64 port is big-endian, while the ia64 and
        amd64 ports are little-endian, so incorrect
        code is more likely to cause serious problems
        on sparc64.  (maybe that's a good thing...).
    There is already plenty to do for 5.2-release.
    The code freeze is about 48 hours away.

When this came up on the sparc64 list, I believe there were
four people who offered to do help with some of the work
that would be caused by making this change.  Me, Marcel,
Matt at grogged.dyndns, and Harti.  No one jumped up and said
they were explicitly against the idea.  On the other hand,
none of us who do want the change really have a lot of time
to devote to whatever problems come up.

Given the imminent code freeze, I am not comfortable with
commiting the actual change for 64-bit time_t on sparc64
given only four people who seem actively interested.  On
the other hand, I haven't the slightest idea how many people
are actively running sparc64...  Maybe four is a significant
part of the active userbase!

So, I thought I'd explicitly say that I don't think we
should make the change this late in the game..  But I
*would* be happy if other developers wanted to shout me
down and go ahead with the it...    :-)

Garance Alistair Drosehn            =   gad at gilead.netel.rpi.edu
Senior Systems Programmer           or  gad at freebsd.org
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute    or  drosih at rpi.edu

More information about the freebsd-sparc64 mailing list