OSX@PowerPC: Dropping support - why?

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Douglas Mencken Douglas Mencken
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OSX@PowerPC: Dropping support - why?

Hello.

As I found, LibreOffice community suddenly ditched support for Mac OS X @ PowerPC since version 4.1.0. Specifically, it has been done with the following two commits by plain removal of code:

http://cgit.freedesktop.org/libreoffice/core/commit/?id=7aa6f1b01481c1d0f1a12f56ad197c797056c37b

http://cgit.freedesktop.org/libreoffice/core/commit/?id=d8842c2221cb5e6ea958381f9dcd76d9bb9bbafc

Can you please explain, why is it needed to drop? How does such removal help LibreOffice? Can you please tell, which new features / bug fixes are impossible to implement due to presence of lines you removed? Why is removing OS X @ PowerPC important? Why such awful decision has been made? Where can I read any related discussion about this decision?

Thanks.

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Christian Lohmaier-2 Christian Lohmaier-2
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Re: OSX@PowerPC: Dropping support - why?

Hi Douglas, *,

On Mon, Aug 5, 2013 at 9:51 PM, Douglas Mencken <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> As I found, LibreOffice community suddenly ditched support for Mac OS X @
> PowerPC since version 4.1.0. Specifically, it has been done with the
> following two commits by plain removal of code:

The decision is not about dropping PPC - that is just a side-effect.
The decision is to officially drop support for Mac OSX 10.5 and older.
Dropping PPC is just a consequence of this, since there is no newer
version of Mac OSX for PPC.

Well, not really - it was decided quite a while ago to drop support
for PPC, to be able to raise the baseline, get rid of the old
toolchain.

The official drop of PPC support (for me at least) was the build
requirement of a newer version of "touch" than the one that comes with
Mac OSX / Xcode for 10.4/5.

> Can you please explain, why is it needed to drop? How does such removal help
> LibreOffice?

It helps not having to care about old systems when implementing stuff
that depends on the newer OS technologies. If you'd want to continue
supporting 10.4/10.5, you would have to do twice the work. One time
using the new OS features, and another time doing it for the old OS.
This complicates the code, and given that there are very few macosx
developers, this just isn't worth the effort.

Fewer and fewer users use Mac OSX on their PPC.

So the benefit is: Developers can focus on the actual features,
without having to care about backwards-compatibility to a system they
don't even have access to.

> Can you please tell, which new features / bug fixes are
> impossible to implement due to presence of lines you removed? Why is
> removing OS X @ PowerPC important? Why such awful decision has been made?

See above. The decision is to drop support for 10.4/10.5 - PPC just is
Apple's victim. Ask Apple why they don't support PPC anymore. Why
current versions of Mac OSX are only available for Intel. Ask Apple
why they don't offer software-updates for 10.5 any longer.

> Where can I read any related discussion about this decision?

In the old ESC minutes for example, and on the wiki page that was
started way back for such kind of stuff
http://wiki.documentfoundation.org/Development/LibreOffice4

That 4.0.x is still available for PPC is basically an additional
bonus... (since nothing needing new OS features was added)

Having said all that: it is opensource after all. If there is a group
of Mac developers who want to maintain a PPC port nevertheless, they
are welcome to join the project and revive the port (but that port
would diverge more and more from the Mac/Intel version in future)

ciao
Christian
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Norbert Thiebaud Norbert Thiebaud
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Re: OSX@PowerPC: Dropping support - why?

In reply to this post by Douglas Mencken
On Mon, Aug 5, 2013 at 2:51 PM, Douglas Mencken <[hidden email]> wrote:
> Hello.
>
> As I found, LibreOffice community suddenly ditched support for Mac OS X @
> PowerPC since version 4.1.0.

On top of what cloph already explained, I would add that this was not 'sudden'
The release note of 4.0 already warned that 10.4/10/5 SDK and hence
PPC where 'deprecated'
which means.. will be dropped soon, likely at the next version.

https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/ReleaseNotes/4.0#Feature_removal_.2F_deprecation
"Deprecated Mac / PPC as a platform, raising our base-line to 10.6."

it was added in the release note of 4.0 at that point:
https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/index.php?title=ReleaseNotes/4.0&oldid=59392

that is 11th of December 2012... more than 8 months before 4.1
release... hardly 'sudden'

> Specifically, it has been done with the
> following two commits by plain removal of code:
>
> http://cgit.freedesktop.org/libreoffice/core/commit/?id=7aa6f1b01481c1d0f1a12f56ad197c797056c37b
>
> http://cgit.freedesktop.org/libreoffice/core/commit/?id=d8842c2221cb5e6ea958381f9dcd76d9bb9bbafc

Actually that was already effectively broken before that, due to the
introduction of OS feature/api that were not backward compatible with
10.4/10.5.
The commit you indicate are just the one that makes it clear and
official.. but the tree before these commit where already not
buildable on ppc.


But as Cloph said: if you have the hardware and the time to dedicate
to the task... your welcome to maintain backward compat with 10.4...
we will even gladly take the patches, as long as it does not break, or
put undue requirements to,  the other platforms supported.


PS: if it has not been for cloph perseverance and dedication, the PPC
platform would have been drop way earlier... prolly as soon as the 3.4
release. Bear in mind Apple timeline
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apple%27s_transition_to_Intel_processorshttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apple%27s_transition_to_Intel_processors

Apple has not sold a PPC hardware in 7 years.
Apple dropped PPC support from their SDK 4 years ago.
Apple formally dropped support for any PPC software 2 years ago.

as the saying goes: you can't be more royalist than the king. (
http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/%C3%AAtre_plus_royaliste_que_le_roi )

Norbert
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Douglas Mencken Douglas Mencken
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Re: OSX@PowerPC: Dropping support - why?

Well, I finally did it.

Actually, it's currently hard to support SDK 10.4u, because it is incompatible with gcc-4.2,
so I decided to begin with SDK 10.5. Meanwhile, 10.5 also supports CoreText at enough level.

Perfectly working LO:
http://ftp.osuosl.org/pub/manulix/other/libreoffice/LibreOfficeDev_4.2.0.0.alpha0_20130831_MacOS_PPC.dmg

About Box ;)
http://ftp.osuosl.org/pub/manulix/other/libreoffice/lo_4.2_git-about_box-screenshot.png

$ git branch
* tenfour
$ git shortlog -s -n --author="dougmencken"
    43  dougmencken



On Mon, Aug 5, 2013 at 5:52 PM, Norbert Thiebaud <[hidden email]> wrote:
On Mon, Aug 5, 2013 at 2:51 PM, Douglas Mencken <[hidden email]> wrote:
> Hello.
>
> As I found, LibreOffice community suddenly ditched support for Mac OS X @
> PowerPC since version 4.1.0.

On top of what cloph already explained, I would add that this was not 'sudden'
The release note of 4.0 already warned that 10.4/10/5 SDK and hence
PPC where 'deprecated'
which means.. will be dropped soon, likely at the next version.

https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/ReleaseNotes/4.0#Feature_removal_.2F_deprecation
"Deprecated Mac / PPC as a platform, raising our base-line to 10.6."

it was added in the release note of 4.0 at that point:
https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/index.php?title=ReleaseNotes/4.0&oldid=59392

that is 11th of December 2012... more than 8 months before 4.1
release... hardly 'sudden'
Actually that was already effectively broken before that, due to the
introduction of OS feature/api that were not backward compatible with
10.4/10.5.
The commit you indicate are just the one that makes it clear and
official.. but the tree before these commit where already not
buildable on ppc.


But as Cloph said: if you have the hardware and the time to dedicate
to the task... your welcome to maintain backward compat with 10.4...
we will even gladly take the patches, as long as it does not break, or
put undue requirements to,  the other platforms supported.


PS: if it has not been for cloph perseverance and dedication, the PPC
platform would have been drop way earlier... prolly as soon as the 3.4
release. Bear in mind Apple timeline
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apple%27s_transition_to_Intel_processorshttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apple%27s_transition_to_Intel_processors

Apple has not sold a PPC hardware in 7 years.
Apple dropped PPC support from their SDK 4 years ago.
Apple formally dropped support for any PPC software 2 years ago.

as the saying goes: you can't be more royalist than the king. (
http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/%C3%AAtre_plus_royaliste_que_le_roi )

Norbert


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Caolán McNamara Caolán McNamara
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Re: OSX@PowerPC: Dropping support - why?

On Sat, 2013-08-31 at 13:45 -0400, Douglas Mencken wrote:

> Well, I finally did it.
>
>
> Actually, it's currently hard to support SDK 10.4u, because it is
> incompatible with gcc-4.2,
>
> so I decided to begin with SDK 10.5. Meanwhile, 10.5 also supports
> CoreText at enough level.
>
> Perfectly working LO:
> http://ftp.osuosl.org/pub/manulix/other/libreoffice/LibreOfficeDev_4.2.0.0.alpha0_20130831_MacOS_PPC.dmg
>
> About Box ;)
> http://ftp.osuosl.org/pub/manulix/other/libreoffice/lo_4.2_git-about_box-screenshot.png

Cool, so do you want to send your patches to gerrit
(https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/Development/gerrit) or just mail
them as an attachment to this list. If you do and follow the usual
license statement procedure at
https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/Development/Developers then we can
merge them in.

C.

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