Proposal: Improving the LLVM backend by packaging it

Ben Gamari bgamari.foss at
Sat Nov 1 15:43:51 UTC 2014

Austin Seipp <austin at> writes:

> Hi *,
> A few days ago a discussion on IRC occurred about the LLVM backend,
> its current status, and what we could do to make it a rock solid part
> of GHC for all our users.
> Needless to say, the situation right now isn't so hot: we have no
> commitment to version support, two major versions are busted, others
> are seriously buggy, and yet there are lots of things we could improve
> on.
> So I give you a proposal, from a few of us to you all, about improving it:
I'm certainly not opposed to this idea and there is precedent in this
area set by the Rust folks. That being said, I suspect some
distributions may care pretty deeply about being able to compile against
their own LLVM packaging, especially if they are already shipping the
same LLVM version as we require. It would be really nice to hear your
thoughts on this, Joachim.

Do you envision that LLVM always be built alongside GHC when bringing up
a new working tree? I suppose there will also be a "make fetch-llvm"
rule to grab a compatible binary snapshot from an archive
for bringing up builds on small machines (presumably these could be
built at least for the first-tier platforms?)


- Ben
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