What to do about compiler bug and source code?
Herbert Graf email (remove spam text)
On Tue, 2008-07-22 at 13:45 -0400, William Couture wrote:
> OK, I've run into a situation at work, and would like some feedback from the
> I've found a nasty bug in a C compiler (IAR for Atmel (ATMega),
> version 4.21A and 5.11B)
> (using the ATMega644 and cranking optimization up to max, 32-bit locals that are
> put in registers are not properly handled (only sets lower 2 bytes out
> of 4, or in one case
> does not set registers at all!)).
> I'm going to contact IAR shortly, but since I can't reproduce it in a
> sample fragment, I'm
> sure that IAR will want the entire source. But, since it has our
> propritary code, work
> does not want the source to be sent out.
> How would you handle this situation?
I deal with this sort of thing all the time at work, you have a few
1. Create a test case that doesn't use your proprietary code, but
replicates the problem. You mention you haven't been able to reproduce
it, so it looks like this isn't an option.
2. Get an NDA signed so that your code can go to them. This
unfortunately isn't always acceptable to both sides.
3. Have them give you a "special" build of their compiler with debugging
enabled, and then send them the debug info. Oftentimes this is enough to
figure out what's going on. THEY might not want to give you the debug
enabled version of the compiler.
4. Have them send an FAE to your site (or alternatively have them
remotely log into one of your machines) to debug the issue on your
5. Find a workaround, note the problem exists and ignore the issue. This
last one REALLY sucks, but sometime legalities make it the only option.
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