[LLVMdev] SolusOS 2 + Clang

Ikey Doherty ikey at solusos.com
Sat Mar 30 05:46:15 PDT 2013

Hello, my name is Ikey Doherty.
I am the founder of the SolusOS Linux Distribution.

With SolusOS 2 we have decided to create our own base from scratch, 
using the PiSi package manager.
After many repository revisions, it soon become apparant that GCC (4.7.2 
in this instance) is dog-slow.
Out of pure curiosity I attempted to rebuild packages using Clang.

Clang had been pulled in as a dependency earlier on (due to mesalib's 
use of llvm) and I'd paid little
attention to it. How foolish :) Quite simply it is the fastest compiler 
I have ever seen. One fact that never
seems to be mentioned is that by using clang as the compiler, 
./configure scripts run infinitely faster than
when run with GCC. Obviously this is due to the test binaries being 
built to test various compiler features.
In a word: Stunned.

So I tried building various other components with Clang. Notable (and 
well known) failures include GLibc and the kernel. I find it more 
insulting that the standard components put forth by GNU (such as glibc) 
rely on their own non-standard extensions. Simply put: If you want to 
use one, you must use all. The case extends to binutils, gcc, etc.

So, mild rant aside.. I'd like to make it known that I intend to build 
the vast majority of the SolusOS 2 software repository using the Clang 
compiler. We'll literally use a helper import inside the build files to 
switch each packager over to Clang/LLVM. My greatest joy will be when 
the entire repository is built
using Clang, with no dependency on GNU/GCC extensions. This ties in more 
with my vision of vanilla software.

Last but not least, thank you for Clang/LLVM. It's one of the most 
inspired tools I've used in a long time, and for that I'm grateful.

- Ikey Doherty
SolusOS Founder (http://www.solusos.com)

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