GCC using C++

I got this news http://gcc.gnu.org/ml/gcc/2010-05/msg00705.html and it puzzled me a bit: you have the system C compiler depending on C++, making in fact it no more self hosting.

That alone makes me thing whoever decided and whoever requested that is next to suicidal. GCC is known for having _quite_ a shaky C++ standard library AND ABI, as in having at least an incompatibility every major version and sometimes even with minor ones.

I do dislike C++ usage mostly on this basis, let alone the fact is a language overly large, with not enough people dabbling it properly, let alone being proficient.

There are already compilers using C++, one that many people find interesting is llvm. It doesn’t aim to be a system compiler and it’s not exactly self hosting.

Many already stated that would switch to llvm clang front-end once it reaches full maturity (now freebsd proved that this level has been pretty well archived), I didn’t consider to fully switch to it just because it concerned me the fact it depends on C++ and how easy is to have subtle yet major breakages in that language implementations.

llvm people look to me way more capable of managing C++ than GCC ones and I saluted with please the fact they already have a libc++ implementation.

Back about being suicidal, if I have to pick between people that did well on C++ and people that botched many time on the same field, who would I pick?

The current discussions in the GCC mailing list are about C++ coding style, which features to pick and which to forbid, rearchitecture the whole beast to use a “proper” hierarchy and such, basically some/(many?) want to redo everything with the new toy. That makes me think again that llvm will be a better target for the next months/year.

I hope there are enough GCC developers and/or concerned party that will fork gcc now and keep a C branch. Probably having a radical cleanup and refactor is a completely orthogonal issue and should be done no matter they’ll pick C++ or C as their implementation language, GCC has lots of cruft, starting from their bad usage of the autotools.

Mercurial “git grep” equivalent extension

As we are used to git when working on mercurial we miss a lot the “git grep” command as “hg grep” doesn’t really do the same thing. So we managed to quickly create a mercurial extension to add the hgrep command to hg which behaves a bit like git grep.

import itertools, os, os.path

def hgrep(ui, repo, what, **opts):
    files = []
    status = repo.status(clean=True)
    for f in itertools.chain(status[0], status[1], status[4], status[6]):
        files.append(os.path.join(repo.root, f))
    os.system("grep %s %s" % (what, ' '.join(files)))
cmdtable = {"hgrep": (hgrep, [], "[what]")}

To have the “hg hgrep” command and make it work just save it as hgrep.py in your python modules path and add it to ~/.hgrc inside the extensions section like:

hgrep =

Then you will be able to run “hg grep what” inside a mercurial repository and it will find each file at its current state that contains what you were looking for giving you the complete absolute path to the file.