[Haskell-cafe] Announce: bytestring

Don Stewart dons at galois.com
Sun Apr 20 20:07:48 EDT 2008

> > That's all good news; will this release of ByteString be used for GHC 6.8.3?
> > I'm a little tired of linking everything against just so I can use Yi
> > (since GHC/the-GHC-API links against it). :)
> Indeed; this is the biggest issue I have with bytestring right now as
> it's interfered with my work with hs-plugins/GHC-api, especially
> considering I think the new cabal and ghc 6.8.3 should fix or at least
> warn about the library-version-mismatch issues (from what I've heard.)
> The only probable fix I can think of (other than doing compile-time
> hackery on both the C and haskell side to make symbol names differ
> across releases, which is fairly infeasible i'd think and would regardless kill
> portability since template-haskell is the only viable option on the
> haskell note,) is to factor out the usage of bytestring in the GHC-API, or
> just stick the source code to bytestring into the GHC source tree so
> it's not built as a package (so you wouldn't see it in, e.g. 'ghc-pkg
> describe ghc', although I would think the names would still show up in
> the symbol table, regardless.)
> But whatever route you choose, I'm not sure of the ramifications in
> general and it seems to be a tough cookie to solve properly, so we don't
> end up breaking things as we try and fix them. Don probably has better
> ideas.

The use of bytestring inside GHC is limited only to a little bit in the
GHCi modules -- and could easily be replaced, I suspect. Doing so would
remove one dependency from GHC's core, as well as making it easier to
upgrade bytestring versions. Ian, have you looked at this?

-- Don

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