[cfe-dev] Lambdas and the ABI?

Hal Finkel via cfe-dev cfe-dev at lists.llvm.org
Tue Mar 21 06:03:40 PDT 2017

Hi Richard, Chandler, John, et al.,

"Quick" question: What aspects, if any, of a C++ lambda (e.g. size, 
layout, alignment) leak into the ABI or are (potentially) semantically 


We're investigating late lowering/outlining schemes to improve code 
generation for OpenMP and other parallel programming models. One 
important advantage of outlining late is that the IR-level optimizer 
still has access to the pointer-aliasing and loop information from the 
containing function. There are natural benefits to C++ lambdas as well. 
Lambdas that are used "in place" (i.e. only have one call site) should 
always be inlined, so the issues don't come up there, but for lambdas 
that have multiple call sites, or worse, escape (via std::function or 
some other type-erasure mechanism), we can get suboptimal optimization 
results for the body of the lambda. It would seem sad to fix this for 
OpenMP but not for lambdas.

However, optimizing before outlining could mean changes in what 
variables need to be captured (not semantically, but at the IR level), 
and so I'd like to think through what would constrain the optimizer's 
freedom to act in this regard.

John, I'm curious about how this might apply to Objective C blocks as well.

Thanks again,


Hal Finkel
Lead, Compiler Technology and Programming Languages
Leadership Computing Facility
Argonne National Laboratory

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