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Subject: Re: [boost] [Removing support for old compilers]
From: Andrey Semashev (andrey.semashev_at_[hidden])
Date: 2013-10-14 12:25:26

On Mon, Oct 14, 2013 at 8:20 PM, Robert Ramey <ramey_at_[hidden]> wrote:
> I realize that I've asked this before - but I never got a response which I
> found
> convincing. I'll try to ask my question better this time.
> The question - What is the value of undertaking this task.
> Let's look at the value of according to the type of boost
> participant.
> a) boost user - all this code in config and the libraries is
> internal to the libraries. After this change the look and
> usage of boost will not change at all. - no benefit and
> no cost to the boost user.

Not quite true. Boost.Config is a library as any other, its macros are
documented. I use these macros in projects outside Boost where I need
portability across different compilers. I don't really care about the
compilers we're dropping now, so the changes proposed so far don't
affect me. But it doesn't mean it doesn't affect any other users.

> d) maintainers of boost libraries. When I first raised this
> question, I was assured that it would be totally transparent
> to me and that I would not have to be concerned about it.
> Hmmm - well OK - as long I don't have to wade in and
> muck around with ten year old code - (don't even think about
> addressing any changes which make old data sets unreadable).
> My worst nightmare is having to go back and re-debug
> 20 thousand lines of code running on 10 different compilers.
> Recent postings have made me doubt that one can really
> undertake this and guarentee that I won't have to do this.

I didn't really understand your point here. Do you intend to support
the old compilers, even if Boost in general drops them? Because
otherwise I don't see how it affects you - the tests will be running
on modern compilers as they did before.

My understanding is that the most immediate benefit is exactly for
Boost library maintainers. Dropping support for ancient compilers
simplifies code (Boost.Config included), makes it more easily

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