KEil bought by ARM - Page 2

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Re: KEil bought by ARM
snipped-for-privacy@junk.aeolusdevelopment.cm says...
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I think a followup to this is warranted.  After I posted this a
representative from Altium contacted me for details.  Apparently the back
version I asked for was available but the sales person I had contact with
wasn't aware of it.

Too late to be of use to me anymore but anyone getting the same response
from their sales representative might try pushing a little harder.

I did appreciate getting an apology though.

Robert

Re: KEil bought by ARM

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Why would you choose to archive source for an open source compiler instead
of executables?

The difference with the commercial compiler is archiving the executables is
your only option. Most significantly you can't distribute copies of the
archived commercial complier so any other party who may need to maintain
the software in the future will have to buy their own copy of the
commercial compiler to archive now or hope with crossed fingers the
compiler vendor will still be in business and able to supply (at a cost)
obsolete versions of their tools.



Re: KEil bought by ARM

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Also, even if you accept that the commercial compilers are "better" at
code generation (I have not seen this):

- gcc is getting better and better. Presumably there is a limit to how
  good a commercial compiler can be, so any gap should be closing.

- code space and MHz are getting cheaper and cheaper, so it makes less
  and less difference anyway as time goes on.

- It is getting easier and easier to justify using 32 bit parts (like
  ARM) in new designs. I would expect the architecture of these parts
  to more closely match gcc's abilities than, say, the 8051 where Keil
  have been the leader.

--

John Devereux

Re: KEil bought by ARM

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You probably haven't used professional compilers then... Yes, in the
8 and 16-bit space some commercial compilers are worse than open
source ones. However 10 year old ARM compilers _still_ generate better
code than the latest GCC...

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GCC is definitely getting better, but is it narrowing the gap? If you
consider large C++ applications then the scope for improvement is
enormous - I guess a factor 2 of improvement is achievable.

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Applications grow about as fast as memory and performance do, so any
improvements are immediately swallowed.

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Interestingly in the 32-bit RISC space GCC is furthest behind. If you look
at EEMBC or Spec for example you don't see (m)any uses of GCC.

Wilco



Re: KEil bought by ARM

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I have not used a "professional" (commercial) ARM compiler, this is
true.

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Maybe - my programs tend to be "medium sized" C. I would suggest that
we can expect further improvements in gcc with respect to "large C++"
programs. This is because efforts by the gcc maintainers in this area
would benefit all targets enormously, compared to working on
micro-optimising a single backend. This is especially likely if the
factor if 2 you mention is correct.

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Well I guess that depends on who does the benchmarking!

I did come accross this

<http://www.compuphase.com/dhrystone.htm

In summary, it looks like Keil ran their own compiler with full
optimisation, and gcc with none! When both were run with sensible
settings for embedded work, gcc came out ahead in both speed and
memory footprint.

--

John Devereux

Re: KEil bought by ARM
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It's not closing. Gcc is still about a decade behind. I get that figure
independently from several compiler vendors and tool makers. In places
Gcc is apparently an appalling mess.

It is certainly not a sensible choice for quite a few architectures.

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Not for embedded systems or the 8 bit market would have disappeared LONG
ago.

What is 50 cents sent difference on the MCU? well multiply it by 50K per
hear and you get some idea! then there is the additional cost of the
memory, the more complex PCB... the cost is on a size* pads* holes type
equation. it all ads up and 1 dollar per board is 50,000 dollars per
year.

The other problem is EMC... many want to run the MCU SLOWER not faster.

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YEs for some but there is a LONG way to go (if at all) before it will
over take the 8 bit market.

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Yes Gcc can not hope to compete in the 8 and most 16 bit markets.

--
\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\
\/\/\/\/\ Chris Hills  Staffs  England     /\/\/\/\/
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Re: KEil bought by ARM

 
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And of course these same compiler vendors and tool makers are completely
objective and have no axe to grind? Yeah, pull the other one.

Ian

Re: KEil bought by ARM
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None of the conversations were commercial or public. In the case of some
of the tool vendors they had no axe to grind as their tools work with
GCC where required.

--
\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\/\
\/\/\/\/\ Chris Hills  Staffs  England     /\/\/\/\/
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Re: KEil bought by ARM
When I worked for Racal Comms a few years ago, the software engineers I
worked with on a military system had so many problems with the very
expensive compiler they were supposed to use that they switched to gcc.
They didn't tell management who were horrified when they found out;
they let them continue using gcc, however.

Leon


Re: KEil bought by ARM

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Hmm, sounds like these all have a vested interest in saying that...

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Agreed, the PIC springs to mind. In fact all the older 8 bit parts
(those with very few registers).

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Yes, for sufficient production quantities, even the smallest margin
becomes significant. Of course you can make the same arguments for C
vs assembler! We sell <1k boards per year, so it does not matter so
much. I imagine this is the case for many or most other developers
(since there are probably more "small" companies than big ones).

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Actually avr-gcc is pretty good.

--

John Devereux

Re: KEil bought by ARM
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[...]


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I hope you realize you have destroyed your credibility by claiming GCC is
about a decade behind. Or were you talking about places that GCC never was
and never will be? Might as well be infinity behind.


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And your relevant point would be?


Re: KEil bought by ARM
The oldest old compiler we sent as support to a customer this year was
16 years old.

Walter Banks
Byte Craft Limited

larwe wrote:

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