[Mono-list] Re: [DotGNU]Who is working on the IL VM?

Norbert Bollow nb@freedevelopers.net
Thu, 16 Aug 2001 14:50:48 +0200

Rhys Weatherley <rweather@zip.com.au> wrote (on the dotgnu
developers list):

> > The runtime I discussed in my previous message would
> > be capable of running both IL and JVM at the same time.
> > Mono's architecture isn't capable of that without a
> > massive re-design, which would turn it into a clone of
> > Portable.NET.

Martin Coxall <martin.coxall@itouch.co.uk> replied
(cross-posting on mono-list@ximian.com and developers@dotgnu.org):

> Oh, I see. I was imagining an IL-runtime, a Java-runtime, and
> then some dotGNU layer acting as some kind of request broker
> intermediating between them.

Yes, that had been the plan for quite some time... but the new
plan of having a single runtime that understands both IL and JVM
in a way that makes them closely interoperable is probably much
better -- if we can get this plan to work.

I believe that it will still be good to support multiple
runtime engines in DotGNU (so that e.g. the Python and Perl6
runtime engine can be added when the time for that comes), but
IL and JVM are similar enough that it makes sense to try to
integrate them closely into a single runtime engine.

> You plan to have a single JIT that executes multiple different
> types of bytecode in a pluggable way, and also provides the
> ability for each to call the class libraries of the other?
> I.e. Java code using .Net classes and vice versa?
> It sounds very clever if it can be made to work. This is a
> very good idea, yet none of this is made clear in the dotGNU
> website

Good point.  I've put it on my "todo" list to update the DotGNU
website in this respect.

> But it is worth mentioning that I believe that we really are
> all on the same team, and indeed, Mono is just part of the
> dotGNU project.

Well I wouldn't go as far as saying that (I think Ximian may
have legitimate reasons for keeping Mono separate from DotGNU in
some ways) but that doesn't mean that DotGNU and Mono have to
remain entirely separate.

I agree with Martin that there is probably no point in DotGNU
and Mono making two separate implementations of the C# class
library... in fact when the two projects compete for developers
who are willing to contribute in this area, that is likely to
slow both projects down for little added benefit.

Miguel, would it work for you to make the C# class library a GNU
project and to work together with the DotGNU Steering Committee
to make sure that this class library meets the needs of the
DotGNU project as well as the needs of the Mono project?

If the answer to this question is "yes", then I feel that the
next step would be to discuss how this can be organized in a way
that meets the requirements that our lawyers are imposing on us.

Greetings, Norbert.

A member of FreeDevelopers and the DotGNU Steering Committee: dotgnu.org
Norbert Bollow, Weidlistr.18, CH-8624 Gruet   (near Zurich, Switzerland)
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