Developing software for Power Amiga
There is life in the Amiga World! For those of you who have been popping
anti-acids over the so-called "ominous" silence coming from VIScorp; please
read the following and cheer up :-)
StormC for PowerPC and p-OS
Developers information of Haage & Partner Computer GMBH September 1996
It was about one year ago that StormC was first shown to the public with the
goal of providing AMIGA developers with a modern and powerful development
tool that would also equip them for future developments such as PowerPC
AMIGAs and new operating systems. StormC took up the challenge of defining a
new standard for AMIGA development systems. Recent reviews in the German
Amiga Magazin of 8/96 (VERY GOOD) and in the Amiga Plus of 9/96 (94% rating)
have confirmed its success.
StormC for p-OS
The system is developed continually and is being adapted to forthcoming new
AMIGA hardware and AMIGA operating system software. Currently in the making
are a code generator for PowerPC processors and a StormC version for
ProDAD's new operating system, p-OS.
The PPC Cross-Compiler
The latest development is a cross-compiler system that will enable you to
create software under AmigaOS that will run on the PPC card by Phase 5. To
this end the Program Manager can be instructed to write certain program
modules using the 68K code generator and others using the one for PPC.StormC
takes care of the rest in a highly automated development cycle.
To make StormC suitable for generating both 68K and PPC programs, the
compiler has been constructed in layers. One of these layers, the code
engine, has been augmented with a parallel layer for the PPC: A bypass, so
to speak. This separation of responsibilities guarantees a clean interface
to the rest of the compiler, making it much easier for instance to adapt the
RISC code generator to a different CPU.
The PPC code generator converts the CPU-independent form of a program into
an executable tailored for a particular processor. This process requires a
different approach for RISC processors than it does for CISC CPUs. Although
the PPC is a RISC design in most respects, it is still substantially easier
to program than eg. an Alpha or MIPS CPU.
StormC's PowerPC code engine has already been fitted with basic functions
for good peephole optimization and instruction scheduling. A notable
advantage compared to other PPC compilers is StormC's integrated Register
Allocator that allows for both Amiga-style register usage controlled by eg.
#pragma statements and excellent automatic register allocation.
A Special Linker
The linker is responsible for combining both 68K and PPC object code into a
so-called Fat Binary. When the program is run, the PPC part is started
automatically as a separate task and can be run in parallel with tasks on
the 68K side.
The next step is adapting the source-level debugger to the PPC processor.
This will allow you to track down bugs in PPC code with the same level of
comfort that is available for 68K code.
More information about availability and pricing is available directly from:
HAAGE & PARTNER Computer GmbH Mainzer Strasse 10A D - 61191 Rosbach Germany
If you still feel "restless", drop VIScorp an e-mail saying that you are
willing to help them with whatever skills you have in the continuued development
of the Amiga.
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Last modified: Fri Sep 27 10:16:30 MET DST 1996