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[gNewSense-users] Clang and Debian

From: fr33domlover
Subject: [gNewSense-users] Clang and Debian
Date: Sun, 27 Jul 2014 16:33:17 +0300

Hello gNewSense users and developers,

You're probably aware already of the Clang C/C++ compiler, mainly
developed by Apple under a permissive license. There has been a debate
recently related to how Clang may be taking GCC's place. RMS and ESR
participated in the discussion.


This issue by itself is probably not a problem for gNewSense or any
fully free distro, because Clang is just a package. But what if some
distros began building their package archives using Clang instead of
GCC? Take a look here:


And this is a recent update (also take a look at the comments):


Like is says there, there's still work to do, but what happens if the
official Debian archives move at some point to Clang (and maybe use GCC
just for error checking, etc.)? It's still far away, but if gNewSense
uses the same packages directly from Debian, it means:

- It will be using Clang-built packages and help promote Clang further
  as a GCC replacement
- If using GCC, things may fail because Debian packages may rely on
  Clang successful builds

Again, this is theory at the moment, but I'd like you to take a moment
to think about it and maybe discuss what would/should be done in such a
case. Better think and brainstorm early, and be ready for something
like this, than be surprised later (e.g. making a huge Clang-built
archive build with GCC may be non-trivial, like the work done by those
people for the debian clang project).

I don't intend to cause a loud debate of course, but simply to raise
the philosophical issue and discuss it. It's going to affect all free
software, including distros. Making a statement early can affect the
future of this "clang vs gcc" issue, for free software in general and
for distros.

-- fr33

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