LLVM 2.6 Released, Clang Is Now Production Ready
Written by Michael Larabel in Compiler on 25 October 2009 at 09:18 AM EDT. 25 Comments
Version 2.6 of LLVM, the Low-Level Virtual Machine, has been released. This modular compiler infrastructure, which can replace many parts of the GNU Compiler Collection and go far beyond the conventional roles as a code compiler such as being used within Apple's Mac OS X OpenGL implementation for providing optimizations and is similarly going to be used within Gallium3D, has taken a major leap forward with the 2.6 release.

LLVM 2.6 includes better x86_64 code generation, new code generators for multiple architectures, support for SSE 4.2, improved optimizations, and perhaps most notably it is the first release to include Clang where it's now at a "production quality" status for C and Objective-C on x86. Clang is the C compiler front-end for LLVM that replaces the need of a GCC front-end within LLVM. Clang in LLVM 2.6 offers better error messages over that of what GCC produces, compiles code noticeably faster (reportedly a 3x improvement over GCC 4.2), and is BSD licensed.

There are also new LLVM sub-projects, such as DragonEgg, which is a llvm-gcc plug-in now targeting the unreleased GCC 4.5 series. Furthermore, included in LLVM 2.6 is an early version of llvm-mc, which is a machine code assembler and disassembler.

The release announcement for LLVM 2.6 was made on the LLVM mailing list.

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Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 10,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter or contacted via MichaelLarabel.com.

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