Doug Gregor doug.gregor@gmail.com
Thu Jul 12 15:06:00 GMT 2007

On 7/12/07, Dave Korn <dave.korn@artimi.com> wrote:
> On 12 July 2007 15:29, Doug Gregor wrote:
> > I had the same reaction. A new major release of GCC
>   Ok, hadn't you better both stop right there.  "Major" release?
> "significantly" affect the version numbering?  We're going from 4.2 to 4.3.
> That's the MINOR release number that's changing.


We could haggle over terminology, and while you are technically right,
you've side-stepped the point.

Each GCC release series changes either the minor or the major version
number, but to users the effect is the same. New features come in, old
features are changed/fixed/deprecated/removed, and there is some
porting effort involved that is not there when the subminor/patchlevel
version changes within a release series. For C++ programmers, the
"minor" release of GCC 3.4 was a major porting effort, while the
"major" release of GCC 4.0 didn't affect their code much because most
of that work was in the middle-end that users don't see.

Hence, from a GCC user's perspective, each new release series is a
"major" release, because it indicates that things are going to change,
and they are probably going to have to port their code, retest, re-run
benchmarks, etc. That's "major" to them (us).

So, feel free to re-read my note from the perspective that a "major"
release is something that has an impact on users, and "minor" is
something that typically does not. But, please, let's not haggle over

  - Doug

More information about the Gcc mailing list