source: project/chicken/branches/prerelease/README @ 13240

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merged trunk svn rev. 13239 into prerelease

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1
2  README file for the CHICKEN compiler
3  (c) 2000-2007, Felix L. Winkelmann
4  (c) 2008-2009, The Chicken Team
5
6  version 4.0.0x5
7
8
9 1. Introduction:
10
11        CHICKEN is a Scheme-to-C compiler supporting the language
12        features as defined in the 'Revised^5 Report on
13        Scheme'. Separate compilation is supported and full
14        tail-recursion and efficient first-class continuations are
15        available.
16
17        Some things that CHICKEN has to offer:
18
19        1. CHICKEN generates quite portable C code and compiled files
20           generated by it (including itself) should work without any
21           changes on DOS, Windows, most UNIX-like platforms, and with
22           minor changes on other systems.
23
24        2. The whole package is distributed under a BSD style license
25           and as such is free to use and modify as long as you agree
26           to its terms.
27
28        3. Linkage to C modules and C library functions is
29           straightforward. Compiled programs can easily be embedded
30           into existing C code.
31
32        4. Loads of extra libraries.
33
34        Note: Should you have any trouble in setting up and using
35        CHICKEN, please ask questions on the Chicken mailing list. You
36        can subscribe to the list from the Chicken homepage,
37        http://www.call-with-current-continuation.org)
38
39
40 2. Installation:
41
42        First unzip the package ("unzip chicken-<version>.zip" or "tar
43        xzf chicken-<version>.tar.gz" on UNIX or use your favorite
44        extraction program on Windows).
45
46        Building CHICKEN requires GNU Make. Other "make" derivates are
47        not supported. If you are using a Windows system and do not
48        have GNU Make, see below for a link to a precompiled set of
49        UNIX utilities, which among other useful tools contains "make".
50
51        Configuration and customization of the build process is done by
52        either setting makefile variables on the "make" command line or
53        by editing the platform-specific makefile.
54
55        Invoke "make" like this:
56
57          make PLATFORM=<platform> PREFIX=<destination>
58
59        where "PLATFORM" specifies on what kind of system CHICKEN
60        shall be built and "PREFIX" specifies where the executables
61        and libraries shall be installed. Out-of-directory builds are
62        currently not supported, so you must be in the toplevel source
63        directory to invoke "make".
64
65        Enter "make" without any options to see a list of supported
66        platforms.
67
68        If you build CHICKEN directly from the development sources out
69        of the subversion repository, you will need a "chicken"
70        executable to generate the compiled C files from the Scheme
71        library sources. If you have a recent version of CHICKEN
72        installed, then pass "CHICKEN=<chicken-executable>" to the
73        "make" invocation to override this setting. "CHICKEN" defaults
74        to "$PREFIX/bin/chicken".
75
76        If you do not have a "chicken" binary installed, enter
77
78          make PLATFORM=<platform> PREFIX=<destination> bootstrap
79
80        which will unpack a tarball containing precompiled C sources
81        that are recent enough to generate the current version. After
82        building a statically linked compiler executable (named
83        "chicken-boot") all *.scm files are marked for rebuilt. By
84        passing "CHICKEN=./chicken-boot" to "make", you can force
85        using this bootstrapped compiler to build the system.
86
87        The build may show errors when creating the info(1)
88        documentation, if you do not have GNU texinfo installed.
89        This is not fatal - the build should proceed.
90
91        If CHICKEN is build successfully, you can install it on your
92        system by entering
93
94          make PLATFORM=<platform> PREFIX=<destination> install
95
96        "PREFIX" defaults to "/usr/local". Note that the PREFIX is
97        compiled into several CHICKEN tools and must be the same
98        while building the system and during installation.
99
100        To install CHICKEN for a particular PREFIX on a different
101        location, set the "DESTDIR" variable in addition to "PREFIX":
102        It designates the directory where the files are installed
103        into.
104
105        You can further enable various optional features by adding
106        one or more of the following variables to the "make"
107        invocation:
108
109        DEBUGBUILD=1
110          Disable optimizations in compiled C code and enable
111          debug information.
112
113        STATICBUILD=1
114          Build only static versions of the runtime library, compiler
115          and interpreter. `chicken-setup' will not be generated,
116          as it is mostly useless unless compiled code can be loaded.
117
118        SYMBOLGC=1
119          Always enable garbage collection for unused symbols in the
120          symbol table by default. This will result in slightly slower
121          garbage collection, but minimizes the amount of garbage
122          retained at runtime (which might be important for long
123          running server applications). If you don't specify this
124          option you can still enable symbol GC at runtime by passing
125          the `-:w' runtime option when running the program.
126
127        NOAPPLYHOOK=1
128          For maximum performance this will disable support for
129          breakpoints, but speed up procedure invocation in safe
130          code. Smaller binaries can be obtained by also giving
131          "NOPTABLES=1", but that means serialization (available
132          as a separate package) of procedures will not be available.
133
134        C_COMPILER_OPTIMIZATION_OPTIONS=...
135          Override built-in C compiler optimization options. Available
136          for debug or release build.
137
138        PROGRAM_PREFIX=
139          A prefix to prepend to the names of all generated executables.
140          This allows having multiple CHICKEN versions in your PATH
141          (but note that they have to be installed at different locations).
142
143        PROGRAM_SUFFIX=
144          A suffix to be appended to the names of all generated executables.
145
146        HOSTSYSTEM=
147          A "<machine>-<platform>" name prefix to use for the C compiler to to
148          use to compile the runtime system and executables. Set this variable
149          if you want to compile CHICKEN for a different architecture than
150          the one on which you are building it.
151
152        TARGETSYSTEM=
153          Similar to "HOSTSYSTEM", but specifies the name
154          prefix to use for compiling code with the "csc" compiler
155          driver. This is required for creating a "cross chicken", a
156          specially built CHICKEN that invokes a cross C compiler to
157          build the final binaries. You will need a cross compiled
158          runtime system by building a version of CHICKEN with the
159          "HOST" option mentioned above. More information about this
160          process and the variables that you should set are provided
161          in the CHICKEN wiki at
162          <http://chicken.wiki.br/cross-compilation>.
163
164        SRCDIR=
165          Specifies that CHICKEN should be built outside of its source
166          tree. The SRCDIR variable indicates the location of the
167          CHICKEN source tree. The executables and object files will
168          be generated in the current directory.
169
170
171        To remove CHICKEN from your file-system, enter (probably as
172        root):
173
174            make PLATFORM=<platform> PREFIX=<destination> uninstall
175
176        (If you gave DESTDIR during installation, you have to pass
177        the same setting to "make" when uninstalling)
178
179        In case you invoke "make" with different configuration parameters,
180        it is advisable to run
181
182            make PLATFORM=<platform> confclean
183
184        to remove old configuration files.
185
186
187 3. Usage:
188
189        Documentation can be found in the directory
190        PREFIX/share/chicken/doc. The HTML documentation (in
191        "PREFIX/share/chicken/doc/html") is automatically generated
192        from the Wiki pages at <http://chicken.wiki.br/>. Go there to
193        read the most up to date documentation.
194
195
196 4. Extension:
197
198        A large number of extension libraries for CHICKEN are
199        available at
200        <http://www.call-with-current-continuation.org/eggs/>. You can
201        automatically download, compile and install extensions with
202        the "chicken-setup" program. See the CHICKEN User's Manual for
203        more information.
204
205        Windows users: Note that you must have "tar" and "gunzip"
206        programs installed and available through the "PATH"
207        environment variable to extract extensions. If you don't
208        download and extract the extensions ("eggs") manually using a
209        browser and the decompression program of your choice and run
210        "chicken-setup" in the directory where you extracted the
211        extension archive.
212
213        Windows binaries for common UNIX utilities (most notably "tar"
214        and "gunzip") are available here:
215        <http://www.call-with-current-continuation.org/tarballs/UnxUtils.zip>.
216
217        A selection of 3rd party libraries, together with source and
218        binary packages for tools helpful for development with CHICKEN
219        are also available at:
220        <http://www.call-with-current-continuation.org/tarballs/>.
221
222       
223 5. Platform issues:
224
225        - *BSD system users *must* use GNU make ("gmake") - the makefiles
226          can not be processed by BSD make.
227
228        - Some old Linux distributions ship with a buggy version of
229          the GNU C compiler (2.96). If the system is configured for
230          kernel recompilation, then an alternative GCC version is
231          available under the name `kgcc' (GCC 2.96 can not recompile
232          the kernel). CHICKEN's configuration script should normally
233          be able to handle this problem, but you have to remember to
234          compile your translated Scheme files with `kgcc' instead of
235          `gcc'.
236
237        - Older versions of Solaris have a bug in ld.so that causes
238          trouble with dynamic loading.  Patching Solaris fixes the
239          problem. Solaris 7 needs patch 106950-18. Solaris 8 has an
240          equivalent patch, 109147-16.
241
242          You can find out if you have these patches installed by
243          running:
244
245          % showrev -p | grep 106950    # solaris 7
246          % showrev -p | grep 109147    # solaris 8
247
248        - On NetBSD it might be possible that compilation fails with a
249          "virtual memory exhausted error".  Try the following:
250
251          % unlimit datasize
252
253        - For Mac OS X, Chicken requires libdl, for loading compiled
254          code dynamically. This library is available on Mac OS X 10.4
255          (Tiger) by default. For older versions you can find it here:
256
257            http://www.opendarwin.org/projects/dlcompat
258
259        - On Mac OS X, Chicken and its eggs can be built as universal
260          binaries which will work on either Intel or PowerPC.
261          To build on Tiger (10.4):
262
263            make PLATFORM=macosx ARCH=universal
264
265          On Leopard (10.5), an extra step is required before `make':
266
267            export MACOSX_DEPLOYMENT_TARGET=10.4
268            make PLATFORM=macosx ARCH=universal
269
270        - On Mac OS X, Chicken can be built in 64-bit mode on Intel
271          Core 2 Duo systems--basically, most recent machines.  The default
272          is 32-bit mode.  To enable 64-bit mode, invoke `make' thusly:
273
274            make PLATFORM=macosx ARCH=x86-64
275
276        - On Windows, mingw32, <http://mingw.sourceforge.net/>,
277          Cygwin, and Visual C/C++ (PLATFORM=msvc) are supported.
278          Makefiles for mingw under MSYS and Windows shell are provided
279          (`Makefile.mingw-msys' and `Makefile.mingw').
280
281        - When installing under the mingw-msys platform, PREFIX must be an
282          absolute path name (i.e. it must include the drive letter).
283
284        - When installing under mingw, with a windows shell ("cmd.exe"),
285          pass an absolute pathname as PREFIX and use forward slashes.
286
287        - Cygwin will not be able to find the chicken shared libraries
288          until Windows is rebooted.
289
290        - gcc 3.4 shows sometimes warnings of the form
291
292            easyffi.c: In function `f_11735':
293            easyffi.c:18697: warning: `noreturn' function does return
294       
295          when compiling the system or compiled Scheme files. These
296          warnings are bogus and can be ignored.
297
298        - The Visual C build requires GNU make and other POSIX
299          utilities.  Both cygwin and msys (with the Developer's
300          Toolkit) have the necessary utilities. When setting PREFIX,
301          use forward slashes:
302
303          make PLATFORM=msvc PREFIX=c:/development/chicken
304
305          The build has been tested with Visual Studio 2003 and 2008.  If
306          you are able to build Chicken with other versions, please let
307          us know.
308
309          The following additional issues apply when using Chicken with
310          Visual C:
311
312          - Add the /DPIC flag when compiling your source files.  Otherwise
313            you will encounter undefined symbols when linking.  Note that csc
314            does this automatically for dlls but NOT for programs.
315
316          - csc generates dynamics libraries with a .so extension, not .dll.
317
318 6. Emacs support:
319
320        An emacs mode is provided in the file `hen.el'. To use it,
321        copy it somewhere into a location you normally use for emacs
322        extensions. If you want to add a specific location permanently
323        to the list of paths emacs should search for extensions, add
324        the following line to your `.emacs' file:
325
326          (setq load-path
327            (cons
328              "<directory-where-your-emacs-lisp-files-live>"
329              load-path))
330
331        Add
332
333          (require 'hen)
334       
335        To make "hen-mode" available, and enter it by issuing the
336        command M-x hen-mode.
337
338        A copy of Alex Shinn's highly useful tab-completion code is
339        also included in `scheme-complete.el'. Install it like `hen.el'
340        and add this code to your `.emacs':
341
342          (autoload 'scheme-smart-complete "scheme-complete" nil t)
343          (eval-after-load 'scheme
344            '(progn (define-key scheme-mode-map "\e\t" 'scheme-smart-complete)))
345
346        Or:
347
348          (eval-after-load 'scheme
349            '(progn (define-key scheme-mode-map "\t" 'scheme-complete-or-indent)))
350
351        If you use eldoc-mode (included in Emacs), you can also get live
352        scheme documentation with:
353
354        (add-hook 'scheme-mode-hook
355          (lambda ()
356              (setq eldoc-info-function 'scheme-get-current-symbol-info)
357                  (eldoc-mode)))
358
359        Replace "'scheme" in the elisp expressions above with "'hen", if
360        you want to add tab-completion to CHICKEN's own emacs mode.
361
362
363 7. What's next?
364
365        If you find any bugs, or want to report a problem, please consider
366        using the "chicken-bug" tool to create a detailed bug report.
367
368        If you have any more questions or problems (even the slightest
369        problems, or the most stupid questions), then please subscribe
370        to the "chicken-users" mailing list and ask for help. It will
371        be answered.
372
373
374        Have fun!
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