Book Image

Learn LLVM 12

By : Kai Nacke
Book Image

Learn LLVM 12

By: Kai Nacke

Overview of this book

LLVM was built to bridge the gap between compiler textbooks and actual compiler development. It provides a modular codebase and advanced tools which help developers to build compilers easily. This book provides a practical introduction to LLVM, gradually helping you navigate through complex scenarios with ease when it comes to building and working with compilers. You’ll start by configuring, building, and installing LLVM libraries, tools, and external projects. Next, the book will introduce you to LLVM design and how it works in practice during each LLVM compiler stage: frontend, optimizer, and backend. Using a subset of a real programming language as an example, you will then learn how to develop a frontend and generate LLVM IR, hand it over to the optimization pipeline, and generate machine code from it. Later chapters will show you how to extend LLVM with a new pass and how instruction selection in LLVM works. You’ll also focus on Just-in-Time compilation issues and the current state of JIT-compilation support that LLVM provides, before finally going on to understand how to develop a new backend for LLVM. By the end of this LLVM book, you will have gained real-world experience in working with the LLVM compiler development framework with the help of hands-on examples and source code snippets.
Table of Contents (17 chapters)
Section 1 – The Basics of Compiler Construction with LLVM
Section 2 – From Source to Machine Code Generation
Section 3 –Taking LLVM to the Next Level

Section 2 – From Source to Machine Code Generation

In this section, you will learn how to develop your own compiler. You will begin by constructing the frontend, which reads the source file and creates an abstract syntax tree of it. Then, you will learn how to generate LLVM IR from the source file. Using the optimization capabilities of LLVM, you will then create optimized machine code. You will also learn about a number of advanced topics, including generating LLVM IR for object-oriented language constructs, and how to add debug metadata.

This section comprises the following chapters:

  • Chapter 4, Turning the Source File into an Abstract Syntax Tree
  • Chapter 5, Basics of IR Generation
  • Chapter 6, IR Generation for High-Level Language Constructs
  • Chapter 7, Advanced IR Generation
  • Chapter 8, Optimizing IR