Version 3 (modified by simonpj, 10 years ago) (diff)


Material about the new code generator

This page summarises work that Norman Ramsey, Simon M, and Simon PJ are doing on re-architecting GHC's back end.

The new Cmm data type

There is a new Cmm data type:

  • ZipCfg contains a generic zipper-based control-flow graph data type. It is generic in the sense that it's polymorphic in the type of middle nodes and last nodes of a block. (Middle nodes don't do control transfers; last nodes only do control transfers.) There are extensive notes at the start of the module.

    The key types it defines are:
    • Block identifiers: BlockId, BlockEnv, BlockSet
    • Control-flow blocks: Block
    • Control-flow graphs: Graph

  • ZipCfgCmm instantiates ZipCfg for Cmm, by defining types Middle and Last and using these to instantiate the polymorphic fields of ZipCfg. It also defines a bunch of smart constructor (mkJump, mkAssign, mkCmmIfThenElse etc) which make it easy to build CmmGraph`.

Todo list:

  • Get rid of CmmFormals on LastJump and LastCall in ZipCfgCmm in favour of CopyIn and CopyOut.
  • Change the C-- parser (which parses RTS .cmm files) to directly construct CmmGraph.

The pipeline

  • Code generator converts STG to CmmGraph.
  • Simple control flow optimisation, implemented in CmmContFlowOpt:
    • Branch chain elimination
    • Remove unreachable blocks
    • TODO block concatenation. branch to K; and this is the only use of K.
    • Consider: block duplication. branch to K; and K is a short block. Branch chain elimination is just a special case of this.
  • The Adams optimisation. Given:
      call f returns to K
      K: CopyIn retvals; goto L
      L: <code>
    transform to
      call f returns to L
      L : CopyIn retvals; <code>
    and move CopyOut into L's other predecessors. ToDo: explain why this is a good thing.
  • Proc-point analysis and transformation, implemented in CmmProcPointZ. (Adams version is CmmProcPoint.) The transfomation part adds a CopyIn to the front of each proc-point, which expresses the idea that proc-points use a standard entry convention.
  • Add spill/reload, implemented in CmmSpillReload, to spill live C-- variables before a call and reload them afterwards. The middle node of the result is Middle (from ZipCfgCmm extended with Spill and Reload constructors. Invariant: (something like) all variables in a block are gotten from CopyIn or Reload.