Macs and Mercury

Chris Brew Chris.Brew at
Sat May 9 00:38:52 AEST 1998

>Actually the conservative garbage collector has already been ported to
>the Mac, so I don't think that should be a problem.  However, the
>others would be.  Are there ports of gcc, bash (or any other Bourne
>shell), and GNU Make to the Mac?  If so, then porting Mercury to the
>Mac should not be difficult.  If not, then it will definitely be a
>non-trivial task.

Metrowerks keep promising gcc, but haven't made any
statements about timeframe.

Matthias Neeracher has a Unix-like make utility for Macintosh
Programmers Workshop.

There are no direct ports of bash to MacOS, but there is a Unix called
MachTen which can generate MacOS executables. It has all the
usual tools.There's a cut-down version, which I have used, called CodeBuilder
(basically the same, but less networking support, and pretty cheap).

There is one gotcha, which is that CodeBuilder runs on top of
MacOS, and so inherits various unpleasantnesses
from the dated and broken memory management regime of MacOS. So unless
you have a _lot_ of RAM, things which would just page heavily on a normal
Unix will likely fall over and maybe even crash the machine. The compile
time memory requirements of Mercury are pretty severe, I think, so this
might get in the way a bit.

To get round that problem, you could go to a proper Unix
There are several free Linux variants for the Mac, but I don't know that
any can
cross-compile for MacOS. If they can, then that is presumably the way to go.

But its too big a project for a Friday afternoon hack. Somebody buy
Fergus a Mac!


Email: Chris.Brew at
Address:  Language Technology Group, HCRC,
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