[llvm-dev] DW_OP_implicit_pointer design/implementation in general

David Blaikie via llvm-dev llvm-dev at lists.llvm.org
Fri Jan 10 11:36:12 PST 2020

On Fri, Jan 10, 2020 at 7:02 AM Jeremy Morse <jeremy.morse.llvm at gmail.com>

> Hi,
> On Wed, Jan 8, 2020 at 8:38 PM Adrian Prantl <aprantl at apple.com> wrote:
> > As far as LLVM semantics are concerned, the implicit pointer doesn't
> seem to be that much different from any other implicit values (such as
> constants) to me. Why do you think that it needs to be represented
> differently inside of LLVM IR?
> I think it's almost entirely that the first argument to dbg.value will
> change from  "Always ValueAsMetadata" to "Maybe metadata, maybe
> Value".

What changes do you have in mind there? Are you referring to the
possibility of implicit values to refer to other variables?

I'm sort of interested in maybe not doing that - and only implementing a
more general form (what's been talked about with the LLVM_implicit_value
(or was it LLVM_explicit_value? I forget)) - and synthesizing artificial
variables in the backend rather than trying to track which variable a
pointer points to. I think this would keep the impact on optimizations
smaller & would be more general. My wager/belief/instinct is that most
cases won't be pointing to a named variable with a single level of
indirection, but to unnamed variables, multiple levels of indirection, etc.

> I get the feeling that allowing more options here will come
> out as more conditions / branching elsewhere, in a way we could try to
> avoid.
> However it's a mild opinion with a certain amount of hand waving; and
> not one that anyone else seems to share, so I'm happy to drop that
> part of the discussion.
> --
> Thanks,
> Jeremy
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