Linux MolBio Software

Dave Love d.love at dl.ac.uk
Mon Apr 1 12:36:04 EST 1996

>>>>> On Thu, 28 Mar 1996 22:42:59 GMT, aimania at airmail.net (Walter Rothe) said:

 Walter> bernard at elsie.nci.nih.gov (Bernard Murray) wrote:
 >> In article <4ivauu$oda at news-f.iadfw.net>, aimania at airmail.net says...
 >>> mangalam at uci.edu (Harry Mangalam) wrote:
 >>>> (altho, some would say that GNU is better than commercial quality :)

Indeed.  Gcc is, anyway, a commercial product.

 >>> I've used both GNU C and Microsoft Visual C++ and although GNU C was
 >>> faster than Microsoft when they only had a 16 bit version, Microsoft
 >>> is now faster than GNU C and there debugger is unbelievable.

 >> I don't see the relevance.
 >> MS VC++ will not run on a Linux/unix box.  This is the prime
 >> consideration.  Its not just gcc that is the item under
 >> consideration but also the operating system, X-windows etc.
 Walter> I am not suggesting that gcc is not useful. I applaud the Free
 Walter> Software Foundation for its work. I was correcting a falsehood that
 Walter> gcc compiles the fastest code. 

I didn't see that statement, and it is certainly true that proprietary
compilers generate faster code in at least some circumstances.  For
instance, the current gcc backend is known not do as well as it could on
Pentiums since no-one has shown sufficient concern to pay for enhancements.
However, I don't know of any (cross-) compilers that compete over the same
range of platforms.

	In one meaningless benchmark, GCC gets 137000 Dhrystones/sec,
	and Microsoft VC++ 4.0 gets 1666666. Your mileage may vary. I'm
	sure there are other meaningless benchmarks where GCC outperforms
	Microsoft's compiler.

	I have had reports that GCC often compiles faster than
	VC++. Again, your mileage may vary.

 Walter> Microsoft works hard updating their compiler with more user
 Walter> friendly environments, tools, etc.

But there is also correctness and standards-conformance to consider and
pervasiveness of the tools.

 Walter> If you are developing new code, that will work on PC, Mac,
 Walter> Alpha, and MIPS, 

but in what operating system (or lack thereof) environment?

 Walter> Visual C++ will impress you.

The ultimate computing slogan is "Your Mileage May Vary".
  -- Richard O'Keefe

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