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05 February 2010, 09:25

LLVM milestone reached - Clang compiler self-hosts

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The LLVM dragon logo
The LLVM developers have announced that their open source Clang compiler is now capable of compiling itself and LLVM correctly.This process, called self-hosting, is a major landmark for any compiler technology as it means that the compiler has become self-sufficient in terms of support for its own functionality.

According to the developers, the Clang compiler was able to build the over half a million lines of C++ code that makes up LLVM and Clang. The binaries created passed all of the regression test suites and were able to repeat the build process creating a "third stage" binary which also passed the regression tests.

The LLVM project, started in 2000 at the University of Illinois and now supported by Apple, Adobe and others, is developing a virtual machine and compilation system which allows for optimisation of intermediate code at compile, link and runtime. Initially targeted at working with C/C++ code, the project's community has developed front-ends to handle Java byte code, Microsoft's CIL, Python and various Ruby implementations.


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