[Fwd: Proposal: Improving the LLVM backend by packaging it]

Joachim Breitner nomeata at debian.org
Sat Oct 25 09:23:44 UTC 2014

Dear LLVM-Packaging-Team, Dear FTP-Masters,

I’m maintaining the GHC package. GHC is the main Haskell compiler, and
supports compiling via LLVM’s IR. For reasons well outlined at
they consider it impractical to support any arbitrary version of LLVM
out there, as LLVM guarantees no stability in the IR code, and plan to
bundle LLVM with GHC, possible with GHC-specific changes.

They explicit want to hear our opinion on this, knowing about our
avoid-code-copy-policy. Given the technicalities around it, I think they
have a point and I don’t see what Debian could do different here, once
upstream decides to go this way.

Do you agree and can I give them a green light on this change?


-------- Weitergeleitete Nachricht --------
Von: Austin Seipp <austin at well-typed.com>
An: ghc-devs at haskell.org <ghc-devs at haskell.org>
Kopie: Joachim Breitner <mail at joachim-breitner.de>, Nathan Howell
<nathan.d.howell at gmail.com>, Reid Barton <rwbarton at gmail.com>, Ben
Gamari <bgamari.foss at gmail.com>
Betreff: Proposal: Improving the LLVM backend by packaging it
Datum: Fri, 24 Oct 2014 18:52:53 -0500
X-spam-score: -6.6 (------)

Hi *,

A few days ago a discussion on IRC occurred about the LLVM backend,
its current status, and what we could do to make it a rock solid part
of GHC for all our users.

Needless to say, the situation right now isn't so hot: we have no
commitment to version support, two major versions are busted, others
are seriously buggy, and yet there are lots of things we could improve

So I give you a proposal, from a few of us to you all, about improving it:


I won't repeat what's on the wiki page too much, but the TL;DR version
is: we should start packaging a version of LLVM, and shipping it with
e.g. binary distributions of GHC. It's just a lot better for everyone.

I know we're normally fairly hesitant about things like this (shipping
external dependencies), but I think it's the only sane thing to do
here, and the situation is fairly unique in that it's not actually
very complicated to implement or support, I think.

We'd like to do this for 7.12. I've also wrangled some people to help.
Those people know who they are (because they're CC'd), and I will now
badger them into submission until it is fixed for 7.12.

Please let me know what you think.

PS. Joachim, I would be particularly interested in upstream needs for
Debian, as I know of their standard packaging policy to not duplicate


Austin Seipp, Haskell Consultant
Well-Typed LLP, http://www.well-typed.com/

Joachim "nomeata" Breitner
Debian Developer
  nomeata at debian.org | ICQ# 74513189 | GPG-Keyid: F0FBF51F
  JID: nomeata at joachim-breitner.de | http://people.debian.org/~nomeata

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