Apple's Compiler Team Starts Upstreaming Changes For macOS 11
Written by Michael Larabel in LLVM on 23 June 2020 at 06:38 AM EDT. 25 Comments
It wasn't even twenty four hours ago that Apple disclosed their plans for transitioning to in-house chips for future laptops and desktops and with that macOS 11. Already we are seeing the first of the LLVM compiler patches being upstreamed in preparing for the wild new Apple future.

Apple obviously has a lot of work already internally for LLVM and front-ends like Swift and Clang in preparing for this future Arm-based environment while also working on universal binaries that can run both on future and existing (x86_64) Macs. Xcode 12 is coming and we'll be seeing more of Apple's compiler work come in the months ahead.

But already we are seeing the first early signs of changes following yesterday's WWDC 20 keynote with LLVM now supporting macOS 11 as a version number. Obviously the more exciting bits will come later.

We are eager to see more of the technical compiler patches to come later to get an idea for any of the new instructions they may be working on for their more powerful SoCs to be worked into Macs.

While Apple is exclusively an LLVM outfit these days, GCC upstream developers already started their own discussions on the feasibility of supporting the GCC compiler with Apple's future macOS 11 and Arm desktops/laptops. On that front whether they write a new port or try to resurrect the old Apple/Darwin GCC 4.2 code, it's looking like it will be quite a challenge and one that will be time consuming.
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Michael Larabel is the principal author of and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 20,000 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 automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter or contacted via

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