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Re: Results of the meeting in Helsinki about the Vancouver proposal

On Wed, Aug 24, 2005 at 11:42:28AM +0200, Olaf van der Spek wrote:
> And what about cross-compiling?

Cross-compiling is no magic wand that can save us from the slow
architectures. There are quite a number of problems with

* Many packages don't support cross-compiling, and those that do may
  have bugs in their makefiles that make cross-compiling either harder
  or impossible.
* You can't run the test suites of the software you're compiling, at
  least not directly.
* There's a serious problem with automatically installing
  build-dependencies. Dpkg-cross may help here, but there's no
  apt-cross (at least not TTBOMK); and implementing that may or may not
  be hard (due to the fact that build-dependencies do not contain
  information about whether a package is an arch:all package or not).
* By using a cross-compiler, by definition you use a compiler that is
  not the same as the default compiler for your architecture. As such,
  your architecture is no longer self-hosting. This may introduce bugs
  when people do try to build software for your architecture natively
  and find that there are slight and subtle incompatibilities.

Hence the point of trying out distcc in the post to d-d-a; that will fix
the first three points here, but not the last one. But it may not be
worth the effort; distcc runs cc1 and as on a remote host, but cpp and
ld are still being run on a native machine. Depending on the program
being compiled, this may take more time than expected.

The amount of time between slipping on the peel and landing on the
pavement is precisely one bananosecond

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