Using LLVM Clang To Compile The Linux Kernel Is Heating Up Again Thanks To Google

Written by Michael Larabel in LLVM on 4 February 2019 at 07:37 PM EST. 24 Comments
Interest in building the mainline Linux kernel with LLVM Clang as an alternative to GCC seemed like it waned for several years, but in recent months that effort has been moving forward thanks to Google's involvement.

Back during Linux Plumbers Conference 2018, two Googlers talked about their use of building the kernel with Clang and even how their Pixel 2 and Pixel 3 devices are running their Linux kernel built under Clang on Android. Besides select Google Pixel devices having their kernels built with LLVM/Clang, ChromeOS also started shipping Clang-built kernels in 2018. Google engineers presented at FOSDEM 2019 over the weekend on this effort.

The motivations are the same as has been expressed before over making use of LLVM's sanitizers, better warning coverage and code portability thanks to having another compiler evaluating the code, various tooling and analysis features, and helping the code quality of upstream LLVM by spotting any new bugs.

More details in this slide deck or the WebM/VP9 talk recording.
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