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Re: Bug#425011: gcc-4.1: FTBFS on m68k and arm, multiple definitions of ffi_prep_closure

On Fri, May 18, 2007 at 09:51:17AM -0500, Bill Gatliff wrote:

> > This isn't directed towards you, but a general remark is that all
> > the talk about dropping arm as a release architecture over the last
> > couple of years (for reasons that seem mostly beyond my control),
> > and the resulting uncertainty has definitely made most of my
> > motivation to work on the Debian ARM port disappear.
> >
> > I don't think anyone enjoys working on a project that is in a
> > 'maybe-sort-of-almost-dropped' state pretty much all the time.
> >
> > Maybe the ARM port should just be dropped to have it over with.
> Do you mean the "arm" port vs. "armel" and "armeb"?  Or do you
> mean ARM targets in general?

The latter.

> I don't have a problem dropping the "arm" port but keeping armel and 
> armeb, since the EABI stuff renders everything else obsolete.

The regular ARM port isn't in very good shape at all, and there is
no indication that armeb or armel would end up doing any better.

> But if you're suggesting that Debian should drop all ARM targets
> entirely, I'm totally against that!

Well, I support dropping architectures that are not in good shape,
and ARM is in that category.

What arguments do you have for keeping badly maintained ports
around?  (Where arguments that involve the dependency of someone's
consulting business on the existence of a Debian ARM port do not

> I think the problem with Debian for ARM targets is the same as for
> other non-x86 targets, in that there are limited resources for
> support because the required hardware and skills are hard to come by.

If I read the annual report correctly, ARM-the-company sold 2.4
billion ARM core licenses in 2006, but now we can't find ARM CPUs

I also think that there are more than enough people who are interested
in the Debian ARM port and would be willing to work on it, but they
either don't know what to do, or are demotivated to work on the port
for one of several possible reasons.  (In the end, though, that means
that the work is not being done.)

> I would _gladly_ take on that responsibility, since I have the
> skills *and* the hardware, if I could find a way to do it and still
> keep my family fed (suggestions and purchase orders welcome!).

Since we're on the subject of "things that demotivate people to work
on the Debian ARM port" anyway, knowing that someone else is being
paid to work on some issue or might be paid to work on that issue is
a very good motivator not to work on that issue yourself.  (Which is
incidentally also the reason why a Debian ARM EABI port took so long
-- if there was no money involved we would have had an ARM EABI port
6 or even 12 months earlier.)

In that regard, I don't think that pitching your services on this
mailing list is helping to motivate people to work on the issues that
the Debian ARM port is currently facing very much.

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