Why write a C compiler?

  • To improve the compile times on debug builds without sacrificing features like I would with TCC.
  • To test out my upcoming (and currently private) compiler backend.
  • To add some extensions to improve the workflow of C programmers.
  • Because I can.

How am I doing?

mostly aight, thanks for asking.

What are some cool new things?

One of my favorite new features are the live compiler (essentially an offline Godbolt but within a terminal) and the out of order declarations.

What architectures will you support?

I'll be starting with x64 but I plan on having Aarch64 support soon enough, it's mostly a matter of user-demand what other platforms I add though I probably won't be supporting anything with a segmented address space because I don't want to implement it.

What OSes will you support?

Ideally the essentials like Windows, Linux and MacOS but currently MacOS isn't setup and Linux has basic support (no live compiler)

Will it have optimizations?

It will eventually have a smart but non-aggressive optimizer but that's still a work in progress

What C extensions will you have?

I'll be supporting all the normal extensions such as:

  • pragma once
  • builtin bitmath (popcount, ffs, clz, ctz, etc)
  • __builtin_trap, __builtin_expect
  • x86 SIMD intrinsics
  • typeof
  • case ranges
  • computed goto

And some possibly novel extensions such as:

What's left?

It can currently compile programs using the subset of C it currently supports but it's still missing some essential details before it compiles any basic C program such as:

  • Thread local
  • Atomics
  • Switch statements


You can follow my development here