An Early Port Of GCC To AMD's GCN Architecture
Written by Michael Larabel in GNU on 22 September 2016 at 11:40 AM EDT. 15 Comments
GNU --
While still in its early stages, there's a port in the works of the GNU Compiler Collection for AMD's GCN (Graphics Core Next) instruction set architecture.

Longtime SUSE toolchain expert Jan Hubicka started a port of GCC to AMD GCN a few weeks back. Hubicka has been experimenting with porting GCC to GCN for running on recent generations of GPUs. He noted in an email to Phoronix that it's still a bit early to report on, but the slides are now uploaded for any interested readers.

Hubicka presented on this AMD GCN GCC port at this month's GNU Tools Cauldron conference in the UK. As of earlier this month he characterized the GCC GCN port as being around 3,000 lines of new code and enough that simple kernels written in C work, but only a subset of the integer scalar/vector ISA is currently implemented.

If this port turns out, it could be important since Hubicka noted that currently the GCN code generator needed to complete the GCC HSA infrastructure is AMD's proprietary finalizer component. To avoid any confusion, this is about using GCC to compile code for the GCN ISA, as opposed to running GCC itself on the AMD GPU.

Those wishing to learn more about the GCC port for AMD's GCN ISA can find the presentation slides here.

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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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