[llvm-dev] A Short Policy Proposal Regarding Host Compilers

Keane, Erich via llvm-dev llvm-dev at lists.llvm.org
Wed May 23 06:21:49 PDT 2018

Hi all-
I just wanted to bump this again, I know I sent it out on a Friday :)  I realize this is a minor code change with significant implications, so it seems to me that I should ensure it gets extensive exposure. 
See the review here: https://reviews.llvm.org/D47073

-----Original Message-----
From: Keane, Erich 
Sent: Friday, May 18, 2018 8:26 AM
To: llvm-dev at lists.llvm.org
Subject: RE: [llvm-dev] A Short Policy Proposal Regarding Host Compilers

I've heard just about zero opposition to this, so I've put a code review together here: https://reviews.llvm.org/D47073 With the intent of either implementing this policy change, or encouraging further discussion/bikeshed.

Thanks all!

-----Original Message-----
From: Brooks Davis [mailto:brooks at freebsd.org]
Sent: Sunday, May 13, 2018 10:34 AM
To: Keane, Erich <erich.keane at intel.com>
Cc: llvm-dev at lists.llvm.org
Subject: Re: [llvm-dev] A Short Policy Proposal Regarding Host Compilers

On Fri, May 11, 2018 at 01:37:22PM +0000, Keane, Erich via llvm-dev wrote:
> Hi All-
> As we all know, the C++14 discussion is flaring up again.  Chandler brought up that he would like a concrete plan to switch.  In my opinion, this is insufficient, as it will result in us simply having this discussion AGAIN next release.  Instead, I would prefer us to have a concrete Policy on our host compilers.  That way, changes like this are unsurprising to our users, and advance our codebase sufficiently.  I believe the arguments for/against upgrading have been made repeatedly, so I won't repeat them here.  My proposal is thus:
> Starting with the Clang 7.0 release, we will officially support any major release of our host compilers (MSVC, GCC, Clang, ?ICC?) released in the past 3* years from our previous branch date to give trunk-developers time to transition (so for 7.0, 3 years before January 3, 2018).  This will be enforced via the CMake CheckCompilerVersion script (ala https://reviews.llvm.org/D46723).  ADDITIONALLY, a CMake warning will be issued for any major release less than 1.5* years old to give our users sufficient time to transition/upgrade their compilers.  Finally, our dependent C++ version will be the best released standard officially supported by the collection of compilers (for example, we'd support -C++20 if all compilers had std=c++20 or eqiv, but NOT std=c++2a).  
> The 3-years/1.5 years would result in our minimum GCC/Clang becoming: 
> GCC5.1/Clang3.6.  We would WARN on anything older than GCC7.1/Clang3.8

Historically 3/1.5 would have caused us problems on FreeBSD, but we're moving to supporting all architectures via an external toolchain[0] so I don't think it will have a major impact.  We'll have to amend our statement of which systems you can bootstrap from to include the need to install a compiler package in some cases (or be more aggressive about merging new compiler versions to stable branches).

-- Brooks

[0] Some of them purely external due to a lack of viable LLVM support and a policy against GPLv3 licenses in the tree.

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