[LLVMdev] LLVM / Elkhound / ARM

Reid Spencer rspencer at reidspencer.com
Tue Oct 31 15:57:07 PST 2006

Hi Guillame,

On Wed, 2006-11-01 at 00:24 +0100, Guillaume FORTAINE wrote:
>  Hello,
>  I am French Engineer in Informatics and I would want to build a start
>  up to  manufacture mobile phones ( OEM level ). I am currently in discussion 
> with investors.

Sounds fun! :)

> We would want to use LLVM as our main compiler but we will need to complete it 
> to have a "commercial grade" one.


> Here are our goals :
> -Use a modified Elkhound as C/C++ front-end :

That wouldn't be my first choice. Why not use the llvm-gcc4 that exists?
Its already very far along the road. The only major missing feature is
exception handling and that is being worked on soon.

> http://www.cs.berkeley.edu/~smcpeak/elkhound/
> -Complete the ARM back-end

I'm sure Rafael would love the help.

> -Fix the bugs to be able to compile a complete Cross Linux from scratch for 
> arm with uclibc-nptl.
> http://trac.cross-lfs.org/milestone/CLFS 3.0.0

Okay, there are people working on getting Linux to compile with LLVM

> We believe that we will be able to speak of LLVM 2.0. :) 

A lot of changes are already planned for LLVM 2.0.  Other than the ARM
backend and fixing (mostly inline asm) bugs for Linux compiling, what do
you need in LLVM 2.0 that isn't already there?

> How many people/much time ( full-time developers) are/is needed to success in 
> this enterprise ? 

There isn't enough information here to be able to say.  What do you mean
by "commercial grade"? LLVM is there or close now by my definition.
There are certainly commercial enterprises using it (several actually).

> What is the best background they need to have to work on this ? ( C, gcc, 
> lcc ? )

It really depends on what those people will be doing. A GCC background
wouldn't hurt but anyone with theoretical compiler background (SSA and
transforms), excellent C++,  and Unix skills should be able to work on

> ( we need these informations for our partners ).

This, I understand :)

> It's a million dollars project and the stuff will be released under GPL.

Note that LLVM is released under the UIUC Open Source License which is
very similar to the 3 clause BSD license. For many reasons, LLVM will
not be released under GPL. We have had discussions at times of releasing
it under LGPL but those discussions have gone away since dicussions
about the integration of LLVM into GCC subsided.

> We look forward to your answer,

And we look forward to your participation in LLVM. Welcome!

Best Regards,

Reid Spencer.

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