RE: why not inline all functions

"Quinn Tyler Jackson" <>
19 Jun 1998 10:33:06 -0400

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From: "Quinn Tyler Jackson" <>
Newsgroups: comp.compilers
Date: 19 Jun 1998 10:33:06 -0400
Organization: Compilers Central
References: 98-06-032 98-06-063
Keywords: optimize

Further to the question "Why not inline all functions" ...

Doing so would mesh a given implementation of a utility library so
intricately with the compiled system that used that utility library
that a full build would be required every time a function's
implementation changes, in order to guarantee that all instances of
the use of those functions took into account changes.

In linked builds, only those components that actually change need be
rebuilt and recertified. This also allows for the implementation of
binary patches in a finite number of fairly well defined places should
a bug be discovered. Techniques such as function entry point thunks
to work arounds would be useless. (Yes, sure they're ugly, but they
prove economical in the real world.)

In nontrivial systems, the cost of rebuilding an entire set of utility
libraries every time one (very possibly unrelated) function is changed
would be prohibitive.

Since I have always believed that every change in code breaks the code
until proven otherwise, even given an infinitely fast compiler that
never optimized an inline into oblivion, an infinite amount of coffee
would be consumed during the subsequent reprofiling and
recertification of the resulting systems.



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