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Subject: Re: Bumping arm and m68k toolchains to gcc 4.9.4

Re: Bumping arm and m68k toolchains to gcc 4.9.4

From: Solomon Peachy via rockbox-dev <>
Date: Fri, 27 Mar 2020 16:12:38 -0400

On Fri, Mar 27, 2020 at 07:36:06PM +0000, Franklin Wei via rockbox-dev wrote:
> 1) Why stick to the 4.x.x series? More generally, is it worth the
> potential trouble to bump the major version? I'd be interested to
> measure performance gains with a more recent compiler (maybe in the
> less prominent codecs which haven't been completely hand-rolled in
> asm).

For two reasons:

 1) 4.9.4 is already in use with mips and various hosted targets
 2) 4.9.4 builds cleanly with even the latest GCC versions

The code was slightly smaller on the h100 and clip+ targets I built for,
but to be honest slight changes in code size/performance is of secondary
concern versus folks being able to build rockbox to begin with.

Once we have everythign stable on 4.9.4 we can explore newer versions of
the toolchain but doing things incrementally seems to be a more prudent
course of action.

> 2) Testing. This change has the potential to introduce all sorts of
> insidious bugs. I'm usually of the "break-then-fix" mentality, but I
> feel like we should get some degree of testing done across
> targets/configurations before you merge this.

I agree that this is risky, but we just got a release out and very
little has happened since then, so this seems to be a natural point to
introduce big changes and work out the kinks.

Unfortunately, I'm of little help on the testing/stabilization front; my
m68k target was stolen in 2009 and my only arm target that is (barely)
usable is a clip+ with very flaky flash.

But I do use my MIPS 4.9.4 target daily, so the subset of code that uses
is pretty solid these days. :)

> It looks to me like you've eliminated all the gory patches we used to
> rely on, too. Great work!

I can't take any credit for that. :)

All I'm doing here is pushing some long overdue changes forward.

 - Solomon
Solomon Peachy			       pizza at shaftnet dot org
High Springs, FL                          ^^ (email/xmpp) ^^
Quidquid latine dictum sit, altum videtur.

Received on 2020-03-27

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