Martin Michlmayr
Martin Michlmayr

I'm a member of Debian, and I work for HP as an Open Source Community Expert. The opinions expressed here are mine.

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Compiling the whole Debian archive on MIPS with GCC 4.1

Over the last 2.5 weeks I have built the complete Debian archive on a quad-core MIPS machine donated by Broadcom using the recently released version 4.1 of GCC. In parallel, I have done the same on an EM64T box donated to Debian by Intel. The purpose of this exercise was three-fold:

Executive summary

GCC 4.1 itself appears to be very stable, both on MIPS and AMD64. There are, however, a large number of packages using code (especially C++) which GCC 4.1 treats as errors. Fortunately, most of them are trivial to fix. By compiling about 6200 packages, over 500 new bugs have been discovered and submitted, 280 of which are specific to the increased strictness of GCC 4.1. Patches for 2/3 of those GCC 4.1 specific bugs have been submitted.

Based on my findings, Ben Hutchings has prepared a summary of the most common C++ syntax errors (that weren't treated as errors before G++ 4.1).

Most common programming errors

Basically, it all boils down to broken C++ code. There were a few bugs in C code, but the majority was in C++. The most common errors I found are:

I've posted a detailed report to debian-devel.

Acknowledgements (abridged)

Sat, 25 Mar 2006; 22:51 — debianpermanent link