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Re: RFC: Better portability for package maintainers

[Erast Benson]
> And thanks to upstream folks, 90% of OSS software is platform
> independent and just works.

Just to get the facts straight here.  I compile and port free software
regularly to Linux, Solaris, Irix, HP-UX, Tru64 Unix, AIX and MacOSX,
and do not share your view that 90% of "OSS software" (what is that?
Lets call it free software for now), is platform independent.  I
regularly run into build problems on all of these, because most free
software is never before compiled with an ANSI C compiler (only GCC,
which have a number of "extentions" not supported by ANSI C), and need
rewrites to compile on Irix, HP-UX and AIX, which happen to have good
and strict ANSI C compilers.  And there are heaps of endian problems
(triggering on big-endian and alignment problems (triggering on hppa
and sometimes sparc) too.  Luckily, GCC is getting closer and closer
to ANSI C these days, so perhaps some time in the near future, the
code developed by free software developers will be platform
independent. :)

So I would say less than 20% of the free software is platform
independent, based on personal problems.

On the positive side, most of the upstream developers believe platform
independence and standard compliance is a good thing, so patches are
almost always accepted when submitted. :)

Petter Reinholdtsen

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