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Re: Autobuilding with cross-compiler to solve m68k woes?

Hi Sam,

>     Steve> What if we had the means of reliably determining which
>     Steve> packages could be cross-compiled, and which needed to be
>     Steve> compiled on a native system?  Would that make
>     Steve> cross-compiling a viable option?

> Please go successfully cross compile multiple Debian packages you do
> not maintain.  You probably don't want to upload the results but if
> you successfully generate debs from a Debian source package by cross
> compiling, it will be an educational experience.

> Those of us who have played with cross compilers tend to believe that
> the engineering problems will dominate and that it is not a viable
> solution.

> If you do have experience making cross compilation work for large
> systems, then please start out with a more fleshed out proposal that
> demonstrates you have thought about the hard problems.

'We tend to believe that the engineering problems will dominate and that it is
not a viable solution' sounds a lot different to me than 'cross-compiling is
evil'. :)  I recognize that there are many technical issues here that would need
to be resolved before cross-compiling would be a large-scale option, not least
of which to my eye is the need for a complete, prepackaged cross-compiling
toolchain that can be rebuilt from source with a minimum of pain.  I'm trying to
look long-term here; and maybe it's naivété that makes me say the technical
issues are not insurmountable, so I would like to know what the technical issues
are that have convinced others that it will never be workable.

No, I don't have a fleshed-out proposal yet; I still need to go through a few
more 'educational experiences' first, as you say.  But I'm optimistic that down
the line, cross-compilers might be easy enough to set up that they'll be useful
to Debian as a whole.

Steve Langasek
postmodern programmer

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