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Re: Why kdelibs4-dev and XFree86 4.3.0 don't play nice together (was: Re: xlibs-pic)

"John Gay" <jgay@celestica.com> writes:

> I know that PIC code is 'supposed' to be better in that it can be loaded
> into memory without regard to the actual location or layout. Why should
> static libraries be built without -fPIC, and who's policy is it anyway?

Position-independent code requires the compiler to reserve an extra
register, which hurts performance on architectures like i386 that have
fairly few to start out with.

> And why are static lib's being linked into shared objects?

Certain X libraries are only available in static form for now because
their interfaces are still changing fairly frequency, so applications
linked against older versions might not work with newer versions.
However, certain other libraries use those interfaces internally, and
need to pull in PIC versions of the static-only X libraries so as to
avoid outstanding unresolved symbols (which are a problem in various
contexts, especially if the libraries that need them are plugins).

> I see. That's a bit different from the understanding I had. I thought that
> X, from X.org was based on the original X created by Xerox's Palo Alto
> Research Centre for the various UNIX systems. And XFree86 was created from

Er, X came out of MIT's project Athena (though the work at PARC was
certainly an influence).

Aaron M. Ucko, KB1CJC (amu at alum.mit.edu, ucko at debian.org)
Finger amu@monk.mit.edu (NOT a valid e-mail address) for more info.

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