[Vm-dev] Aarch64 number bug

ken.dickey at whidbey.com ken.dickey at whidbey.com
Sat Jun 19 22:16:46 UTC 2021

> "If the community valued its primary execution technology then it would 
> be the case that a few members were competent enough to startup the 
> simulation environment and debug this. "

Unfortunately, my attempt to build a VM simulator on aarch64 fails due 
to a divide by zero bug.

Perhaps because
   16r8000000000000000 printStringHex. ==> '0'

You may be over-estimating my ability to debug this sort of thing.


In the wider context, my suggestion is to declare, say the first week in 
July, as "VM Appreciation Week".

The observation being that OpenSmalltalk is common to Cuis, Squeak, and 
Pharo.  OpenSmalltalk is open source. OpenSmalltalk is a _Commons_.  A 
"commons" in our case is a shared resource which is managed by its 

To be better managers (or managers at all, rather than just 
freeloaders), we should take some time to experience it. [a] Build and 
run a/the simulator, [b] Build a VM.

Participation means knowing the resource in order to be able to sustain 

OK, so raising awareness to become visible in the right way.

There are a few speed bumps to be overcome first.

One desires that Joe or Jane coder be able to do [a] and [b] above.

Building VMMaker on Linux/x86-64 I get a large number of merge dialogs 
and then:
This virtual machine is too old to support correct versions of the 
FloatArray>>at:[put:] primitives 238 and 239.
FloatArray subclasses will not behave correctly and FloatArray[64]Test 
tests will fail.
Please upgrade your VM.  You may continue and upgrade later or abort and 
upgrade now.

But if I try to build a VM, I run into a number of problems (notes 
attached; the "included too late" bug shows up in the arm build as 

It is difficult to see today how Joe or Jane can build a VM if like me 
their knowledge of build mechanics is fairly shallow.

Like you all, I have a very busy life.  Among other things, given a 
destabalized climate I am now tending my garden to raise food.

On the other hand, I am happy to spend time supporting the OpenSmalltalk 
Commons as, yes, this _is_ important to me.

I don't feel that I have the skillset to fix the current speed bumps, 
but I certainly would like to declare a "VM Appreciation Week" sometime 
soon and welcome a discussion on how we engender a better stewardship of 
our commons..


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