RE: stack-based vs. register-based

"Scott J. McCaughrin" <>
28 Jan 2001 02:10:31 -0500

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RE: stack-based vs. register-based (Scott J. McCaughrin) (2001-01-26)
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From: "Scott J. McCaughrin" <>
Newsgroups: comp.compilers
Date: 28 Jan 2001 02:10:31 -0500
Organization: CNI/Prairienet
Keywords: architecture, Pascal
Posted-Date: 28 Jan 2001 02:10:31 EST

The first complete Pascal compiler I wrote was targeted for a stack
machine, and it was a real pain after having written phases of other
compilers for non-stack targets.
The biggest drawback is the 0-operand mode of the stack architecture
vs. 2- or 3-operand mode with register operands. The LIFO nature of
the stack leads to much larger code generated, even after optimiza-
tion, than with registers.
Yes, it is true that being stack-based frees you from the pitfalls
of register-based code, but you also lose the advantages.

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