Design of IntegerGmp2 (#9281)

This wiki page is meant as a scratch-pad to describe the plans/ideas behind the integer-gmp2 rewrite


  • allow to avoid the custom GMP allocator hack, and thus
  • avoid issues when linking against other C libraries using GMP,
  • simplify code, as we would perform all heap allocations in Haskell code (and never inside Cmm/C code as its done now),
  • maybe even remove a few more superfluous temporary heap allocations.
  • link-time selectable integer-library backend (think ghc --make -O -finteger-library=bsdnt Hello.hs)
    • simplifies handling on platforms where GMP is not a system-library (mostly OSX and Windows)
    • user code can still link with GMP, even though the primitive operation use bsdnt
  • Allow to implement (big) Natural number type w/o redundant sign handling
  • somewhat more robust out-of-memory handling (since allocations occur in Haskell-land)


For GHC 7.10.1

  • (done) Switch to integer-gmp2 as default INTEGER_LIBRARY
    • but leave INTEGER_LIBRARY=integer-gmp in place as build-option
  • (done) Leave the package name as integer-gmp, i.e. for
    • INTEGER_LIBRARY=integer-gmp we end up with integer-gmp-, while for
    • INTEGER_LIBRARY=integer-gmp2 we end up with integer-gmp-
  • (maybe) update in-tree GMP version
    (by adding a .patch file for the existing GMP 5.0.3 tarball, or by retrieving a new GMP tarball from outside ghc.git, c.f. mingw configure-time autodownloading)
  • (maybe) implement configure-time selectable bsdnt backend
    (could be easily backported as out-of-tree patch from GHC 7.11 branch if there's demand)

For GHC 7.12 (or later)

  • all "(maybe)"-items from above if they didn't make it into 7.10
  • Implement link-time backend selection as described below

Rough Design

Haskell-side API Types

-- | Type representing /raw/ arbitrary-precision Naturals
-- This is common type used by 'Natural' and 'Integer'.  As this type
-- consists of a single constructor wrapping a 'ByteArray#' it can be
-- unpacked.
-- Essential invariants:
--  - 'ByteArray#' size is an exact multiple of 'Word#' size
--  - limbs are stored in least-significant-limb-first order,
--  - the most-significant limb must be non-zero, except for
--  - @0@ which is represented as a 1-limb.
data BigNat = BN# ByteArray#

-- | Invariant: 'Jn#' and 'Jp#' are used iff value doesn't fit in 'SI#'
-- Useful properties resulting from the invariants:
--  - @abs ('S#' _) <= abs ('Jp#' _)@
--  - @abs ('S#' _) <  abs ('Jn#' _)@
data Integer  = S#                  Int#
                -- ^ iff value in @[minBound::'Int', maxBound::'Int']@ range
              | Jp# {-# UNPACK #-} !BigNat
                -- ^ iff value in @]maxBound::'Int', +inf[@ range
              | Jn# {-# UNPACK #-} !BigNat
                -- ^ iff value in @]-inf, minBound::'Int'[@ range
              deriving (Eq)

-- | Type representing arbitrary-precision Naturals
-- Invariant: 'NatJ#' is used iff when value doesn't fit in 'NatS#'
data Natural = NatS#                 Word#    -- ^ @[0, maxBound::Word]@
             | NatJ# {-# UNPACK #-} !BigNat   -- ^ @]maxBound::GmpLimb, +inf[@
             deriving (Eq,Ord)
  • BigNat is an internal common type to Integer and Natural and not exposed through base
  • Natural (#9818) finally fills the gap of the missing unsigned Integer counter-part in base
    • requires fallback implementation (on top of Integer) in base if integer-{simple,gmp} are still to be supported
  • Most operations can avoid calling into the FFI backend integer-library, if the values don't exceed the SI#/NatS# capacity. This also means that the performance difference between using e.g. bsdnt or gmp is only noticeable for large operands.
  • The basic requirements to be able to write an adapter for a FFI integer-library for integer-gmp2:
    • no memory allocation of result BigNums (but rather writes into caller-allocated buffers)
    • BigNums are represented as machine-word-sized arrays + length information
  • integer-gmp2 needs only about a dozen of rather generic low-level primitive arithmetic BigNum operations, such as e.g.
    -- mp_limb_t mpn_add_1 (mp_limb_t *rp, const mp_limb_t *s1p, mp_size_t n,
    --                      mp_limb_t s2limb)
    foreign import ccall unsafe "gmp.h __gmpn_add_1"
      c_mpn_add_1 :: MutableByteArray# s -> ByteArray# -> GmpSize# -> GmpLimb# -> IO GmpLimb
    -- mp_limb_t mpn_add (mp_limb_t *rp, const mp_limb_t *s1p, mp_size_t s1n,
    --                    const mp_limb_t *s2p, mp_size_t s2n)
    foreign import ccall unsafe "gmp.h __gmpn_add"
      c_mpn_add :: MutableByteArray# s -> ByteArray# -> GmpSize# -> ByteArray# -> GmpSize# -> IO GmpLimb
  • The plan is to write a small shim-like C library that implements a uniform adapter for integer-gmp2 to call into, that wraps libraries such as GMP or bsdnt. This small adapter is then selected at link-time by ghc --make similiar to how ghc selects one of its various runtimes (threaded, debugging, non-threaded, ...)

Simplifying 3rd party GMP-addon packages

  • integer-gmp-1.0.0 provides an installed <ghc-gmp.h> header which is supposed to either include the system-wide <gmp.h> header, or correspond to the in-tree's GMP headers content.
  • integer-gmp-1.0.0 persists meta-information about the build-time GMP library used in HsIntegerGmp.h.

Here's an example for the definitions created for the in-tree GMP:

#define GHC_GMP_INTREE     1
#define GHC_GMP_VERSION   (5 * 10000 + 0 * 100 + 4)

And here's an example for a system-installed GMP:

#define GHC_GMP_INTREE     0
#define GHC_GMP_VERSION   (6 * 10000 + 0 * 100 + 0)
Last modified 2 years ago Last modified on Jul 18, 2015 7:33:36 AM