> > > Where exactly does GCC fit into the mix, making this impossible? > > > > They compile Lisp (etc) to a C file, which they compile (with gcc) to > ^^^ > actually with as(1), because gcc is only generates assembler file, > which is then translated into the object file by assembler (as). > Assembler by itself is part of binutils, not a compiler suite.
I suspect Richard Tobin was using the generally accepted meaning for a "compiler" as one that translates a source program into object code (machine language). In any case, it is cc1 that generates an assembly file. gcc is just a driver program that calls various subprograms. Richard's main point with which I totally agree is that please do not take away the ability to generate and grok a.out files *if at all possible*. A number of Lisp systems as well as Scheme one use ld -A & friends to do what he described. In general, please do not break backward compatibility. <meta-discussion> Seems to me that most of the FreeBSD developers are not heavy 3rd part software users. Consequently they (the developers) do not realize that even when sources are available it is not always easy to update them to support changes that break old code -- due to lack of time or money or inability or inexperience to change the 3rd party software or whatever. When sources are not available, you are up the proverbial creek. You may say just continue running old freeBSD kernels but the constant stream of security fixes makes hard to justify doing that. IMHO what is needed is a strong voice for the *users* (along with hackers/developers) in influencing the direction FreeBSD takes -- right now if you don't hack FreeBSD code, you don't get listened to very much. This is like letting a builder build a house, or worse, letting an architect design a house without input from the people who are going to live in it ["trust me, you want a 4000 sq ft house on your 4500 sq ft lot, with humongous walkin closets, tiny bedrooms, a big master bathroom with large french windows in the shower (so what if it is facing your neighbor's living room windows only 10 ft away)"]. In a commercial setting it is the user who ultimately pays the development costs so they do get listened to (or the company dies). As an example, on a modern SGI machine you can still run 20 year old binaries -- providing such compatibility is a pain and not pretty but to long time users' their "dusty decks" are very valuable. Unfortunately there is no such direct back-pressure in the open source community and developers usually don't have a long term view. </meta-discussion> To Unsubscribe: send mail to [EMAIL PROTECTED] with "unsubscribe freebsd-current" in the body of the message