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Who Else Released GCC 2.96?

Oct 13, 2000, 14:00 (11 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Brian Proffitt)

By Brian Proffitt

When the GCC steering committee made its October 6 announcement regarding the unofficial release of its 2.96 development version, the announcement's first sentence left some people scratching their heads.

The sentence implied that there was more than one distribution of Linux that had released with GCC 2.96, which was the version number for the development track of the GNU C Compiler. Red Hat Inc. came under some criticism last week when it was revealed that Red Hat Linux 7 shipped with the snapshot of this development release of the user-space complier.

Specifically, the sentence read: "It has come to our attention that some GNU/Linux distributions are currently shipping with "GCC 2.96."

At the time, the author of the announcement, Gerald Pfeifer, could not be reached for comment on what other distributions besides Red Hat 7 had included this specific version. Earlier this week, Pfeifer had this response to the question regarding other distributions:

"Personally, I am not aware of any distribution besides Red Hat that uses this snapshot, but I have been told that some distributions have been planning to do something similar and FreeBSD is using a snapshot on its Current (development) branch," Pfeifer said in an online interview.

A quick survey of three other popular Linux distributions revealed no releases of any GCC version other than from the stable 2.95 version.

Both Linux-Mandrake's current 7.1 release and the beta 7.2 release are shipping with GCC 2.95.2-7 and GCC 2.95.2-12, respectively. SuSE 7.0 ships with GCC 2.95.2-100, and Debian comes with GCC 2.95.2-13.

In response to the shipment of 2.96 by Red Hat, the steering committee also announced they were renumbering the development branch to 2.97. The next stable release of GCC will be 3.0, which has a qualified target date of later this year.

"We would like to release GCC 3.0 by the end of the year, if all goes well," Pfeifer said, "though there may be unforeseen delays, as our primary focus for releases is quality, not date of release."

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