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C Language Modules For LLVM Still Being Tackled

Compiler

Published on 20 March 2013 12:56 PM EDT
Written by Michael Larabel in Compiler
18 Comments

Last year at the LLVM developers' meeting it was proposed by an Apple engineer the concept of "modules" for C code in LLVM/Clang to replace the common development approach for C/C++ languages of including header files and passing the library to the linker. LLVM modules seek to take a different approach.

For those that didn't see the original presentation by Apple's Doug Gregor about his proposal to introduce "modules" to C/C++, there are still PDF slides available. This is still considered experimental work, but he views C family headers as being a fundamentally broken design and sees a new for a module system for the C family and building better tools.

Among the problems expressed with the current #include model is that there's poor compile-time scalability with including of header files for pre-processing, fragility of the #include directive, conventional workarounds, and tool confusion. These are among the items the module system seeks to solve.

Anyhow, what's new today is that Gregor has committed to the Clang tree a bunch of documentation concerning this experimental module system for C/C++ programming languages. As this isn't a topic that interests all Phoronix readers, for those wanting to learn more about the proposed module system, read the new Clang documentation.

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