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Re: Nobody in the world understands Gnu's 'ld'.

Actually, quite a few people understand GNU's ld very well indeed (I do,
for one, and I suspect the folks at Cygnus understand it much better).  And
yes, I not only use the scripting language, I rely on it quite heavily.  It
is indispensable when preparing images for an embedded system.

I've also linked disparate object formats with GNU-ld, and for the formats
it supports, it usually works quite well.  Of course, I usually also
manually inspect the output for the first couple of images ... ;-)

The only problem I've come across with the NT/95 b17.1 GNU ld was the
screwed up offsets when linking OMF and GNU-pe-i386 objects with a
commercial linker.  I had assumed this was a Phar-Lap problem or just an
incompatible image problem -- I'm a little out of date wrt. MS; didn't know
MS' "PE" really was COFF+MS (thanks for info win32-folks ;-).  There are
other reports of the same problem with the MSVC linker, though.  So, I now
suspect a minor bug in the GNU implementation of pe-i386.

BTW, before you start throwing around all these assumptions about what 'we'
need in a linker, consider that I would indeed prefer support for a.out,
ELF, and other Unix object formats over support for linking MSVC objects or
libraries.  That would be a feature I would use.  Linking with MSVC objects
would be a feature I would not use.  GNU-ld is one of the major attractions
to using the GNU toolset.  The implementation has it's drawbacks, but overall
it is a rather large step forward in the linking game.

The whole GNU concept is driven by people who need a feature bad enough to
actually implement it, and generous enough to share the results of their
efforts.  Whine all you want, but be aware that mostly it just irritates
the folks that spend time writing useful code.

I may take a stab at fixing the offset problem.  But since this feature
would only be used for a limited time here, I won't waste more than a few
hours on it.  If you really need this feature, don't hold your breath for a
patch from me.

Damn, anyone got a pair of pliers?  I seem to have this trolling hook
stuck in my mouth ... ;->

- Tim Iverson

| From: (root)
| Subject: Nobody in the world understands Gnu's 'ld'.
| To: (Jim Balter)
| Date: Tue, 25 Mar 1997 08:23:33 +0100 (MET)
| Cc:
| Gnu's linker: A NIGHTMARE!
| -------------------------
[very long anti-GNU-ld diatribe, heavily paraphrased: I can't comprehend
 GNU ld, therefore I gave up and wrote my own linker.  No one ever uses
 half the features of GNU ld anyway.  All we really need is MSVC object
 and library support.]
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