Sparc64 doesn't care about you, and you shouldn't care about Sparc64

Justin Hibbits jrh29 at
Sun Nov 8 20:46:24 UTC 2015

On 11/8/15, Marius Strobl <marius at> wrote:
> As for getting forward, the FreeBSD Software License Policy
> (
> specifically allows for existing GPLv2 licensed software in
> the FreeBSD source tree to be updated to GPLv3 licensed one.
> The initial, longer draft of this policy posted by brooks@ to
> developers@ even explicitly mentioned key technologies such
> as toolchains of other licenses being allowed when no mature
> BSD-licensed alternative exists. So I propose just that:
> Let's upgrade binutils and GCC in base to recent versions.
> Seriously. That way we 1) don't need to get external toolchain
> support into shape, 2) don't need to solve the chicken-and-egg
> problem of getting a toolchain onto a machine installed from
> a distribution built with an external toolchain and 3) once
> clang becomes mature on additional architectures, we have an
> upgrade path. Don't get me wrong, I'm only proposing that
> for !arm and !x86.
> As a side note: A while back I talked to grehan@ and marcel@
> regarding the immaturities of clang and - as expected -, a
> GPL'ed toolchain just is no problem for either NetApp or
> Juniper as the binaries they ship don't include the toolchain
> itself. With the possible exception of the current incarnation
> of SCO which apparently sells a FreeBSD-based OS likely having
> a system compiler, for the same reason I can't think of why a
> GPLv3 licensed toolchain would matter for any of the commercial
> downstream consumers of FreeBSD. Thus, I really can't understand
> all that aggression regarding making FreeBSD 11 clang-only.

I 100% agree with you on this.  If we can update binutils to the
latest and greatest, I believe powerpc64 would be able to work with
clang.  I've backported several patches, with IBM's permission, to
binutils for handling new relocations, etc.  However, not all patches
are straight forward, and currently we're missing something, which is
causing odd segfaults in ld(1), when linking as(1).  No other binary,
only as(1).  I've tried looking through it, but the binutils code is a
mess.  I'm sure the bug that's getting hit was fixed with newer
binutils, but have had a very hard time trying to test with it.

TL;DR, let's update binutils at the very least, and gcc if it makes
sense.  We shouldn't be relying on external toolchain for some archs,
and internal for others.  It completely snubs already second class
citizens.  Just look at the various build failures we've had because
to some people All The World is clang/x86.

- Justin

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