Structure alignment with GCC

Michael Sokolov msokolov@ivan.Harhan.ORG
Fri Aug 25 22:07:00 GMT 2000

David A. Desrosiers <> wrote:

> Hey, we're not *ALL* bad. 

That was directed at the PalmOS designers (the assembly-phobiac C fans who
couldn't grasp the notion of an ABI), not the poor people who develop *for*
PalmOS and have to deal with that morass, which is more of a sandbox run over
by a truck.

> [...] but it's still arrving to
> users as a series of patches against gcc. The saving grace is that the
> patches apply "mostly" cleanly. A little hand-coaxing of them into place
> is almost always required.

Hmm, I can't see how the patches in the prc-tools-0.6.0beta tarball can fail to
apply cleanly against binutils-2.9.1, gcc-2.95.2, and gdb-4.18, as they are
direct diff -urN's against those GNU dists.

But this is not where the real problem with these patches is. PalmOS should be
just a regular target, nothing more, nothing less. The Cygnus/GNU toolchain can
target everything from the tiniest embedded MCUs, probably even some usable for
bionic implants (Alexandre and others working on the MN10200 and MN10300 ports,
do these have anything to do with the MN1068-06 that Agent Scully has in the
back of her neck in the X-Files? :-), to the largest supermainframes.
Everything in between included. The same design philosophy and paradigm works
for all targets. For the people at Palm to think that their wonderful OS needs
its own toolchain with their own quite different world view is a little
megalomaniac. PalmOS should be a regular target, and the way the toolchain is
built, what belongs in the toolchain and what belongs elsewhere, etc. should
all be exactly the same as for any other target (it is the same for all
existing targets). This does not hold for PRC-Tools and the patches used there.

> Ideally a -palmos build target would be nice, but
> we're not there yet.

Actually, it will be called m68k-ipgpe or something like that. ipgpe and not
palmos, because I cannot speak for PalmOS at large, only for my environment for
it, IPGPE. We are not targeting raw PalmOS without any environments, we are
targeting the IPGPE environment with its rules as to data access, etc. As my
disagreement with John Marshall shows very well, there can and will be many
different environments for PalmOS. Now someone could theoretically make a
target for raw PalmOS without any environment, but given its extremely little
usefulness, I doubt that anyone will ever do it. About all you can write for
truly raw PalmOS without an environment is a bare code resource without any
data. Any global data, any application startup code, or anything that goes
beyond one code resource requires an environment, and as the real life has
already shown, people will always disagree on the design of these environments
and write many competing different ones.

Michael Sokolov		Harhan Engineering Laboratory
Public Service Agent	International Free Computing Task Force
			International Engineering and Science Task Force
			DALLAS TX 75204-5852 USA

Phone: +1-214-824-7693 (Harhan Eng Lab office)
E-mail: msokolov@ivan.Harhan.ORG (ARPA TCP/SMTP) (UUCP coming soon)

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