Subject: Re: Style guide
To: Scott Reynolds <>
From: Justin T. Gibbs <>
List: current-users
Date: 06/05/1997 14:48:06
>On Thu, 5 Jun 1997, Justin T. Gibbs wrote:
>> They don't ship with a fully functional compiler at all (ANSI or
>> otherwise).
>On the contrary; the compiler functions well enough to bring up a GNU
>toolchain (which is fortunately now an option).

And I would say that the GNU toolchain goes to far greater lengths than
NetBSD to make this possible.  Simply having __P(()) won't cut it on these
compilers.  Feel free to attempt to build NetBSD using the shipped compiler
to prove me wrong, but I think it will take such an amount of work that
the issue of having __P(()) everywhere or not will be of only minimal
concern when compared to the whole.

>> However, the vendor does sell an ANSI C compiler in both of
>> these cases.  I don't see this as having any bearing on this issue
>> since the alternative to gcc is another ANSI compiler in both of your
>> examples.
>As I pointed out, I'm sure you can find others, and without looking very
>hard.  Most NetBSD ports were started as `garage projects,' i.e. unfunded;
>should we make this more difficult?

I haven't seen any proposal that would cause undue hardship on someone
attempting a new port.  Anyone who gets involved in a new port knows that
it will be a tough project regardless and I don't see ANSIfication as
raising the bar much if any at all.  On the contrary, if most developers
are more comfortable developing using ANSI prototypes and function
declarations, the majority of the people working on NetBSD will benefit. It
seems that one side can site specific benefits while the other brings up
speculation about future efforts that, at least to me, hold less and less
water the older the ANSI standard becomes.  The likelyhood of future,
interesting ports, not having some ANSI compiler to bootstrap the effort is
becoming less and less likely every day.

But, lets say, just for a moment, that no ANSI compiler is availible for a
future, interesting, port.  What use is a NetBSD system without an ANSI C
compiler?  What software, outside of the system software that you mangle to
compile on this lame compiler, are you going to run on it? 


Justin T. Gibbs
  FreeBSD: Turning PCs into workstations