Sun Studio is now rebranded as Oracle Solaris Studio
now has a
new name under Oracle: Oracle
. (Follow www.oracle.sun -> Server and Storage
Systems -> Solaris to get here). The pointer actually still takes
you back to the same-old Sun
Studio Developers page
(now, with new Oracle branding
look-and-feel). It is clear that there will be changes, even
beyond just the name change. For instance, support will be move to the
Oracle model. Patch availability is another important aspect. As these
changes are rolled out, I will try to highlight them here as well.
For those of you who are new to this, Oracle Solaris Studio (I have to
get used to the new name) or Sun Studio, is a complete set of
industry-leading compilers and tools geared towards ease application
development of C, C++ and Fortran applications for the Solaris and
Linux platforms. Among its value propositions:
- Performance: Studio compilers provide the best CPU performance
optimizations of all industry compilers, and have set World records on
all SPEC CPU categories in the past years, both on Sun's SPARC and x86
platforms. World Record categories include SPECint, SPECfp and SPEComp
categories, both in SPEED and throughput. If you are looking for the
best tuned performance on Solaris or Linux, SPARC or x86, and if you
are willing to work on getting it, you will undoubtedly want these
- Productivity: Studio comes with a complete set of tools, from a
fully-capable Integrated Development Environment(IDE) to debuggers,
Profilers (Performance Analyzer), to various program analysis options
(lint, static lock detector, runtime checking, datarace detection
tool) to libraries (libsunperf, math libs, garbage collection library,
- Parallelism: From automatic parallelization, vectorization in
compilers to Multithreaded to OpenMP to MPI application development
tools, these tools are more mature and state of the art than any other
vendor tools in the business. As a case in point, Sun's compilers were
used in automatic parallelization enabled benchmarks years before any
of the other vendors- IBM, HP and Intel included- even ventured into
- Platforms: SPARC and x86. Solaris and Linux. Same tools, same
sources, same performance, same libraries, on all these platforms. This
kind of uniformity allows developers to write applications that exploit
the latest features in chip and systems technology, while keeping their
market segments as broad as possible.
Many of the old-time users and application developers are already
familiar with the feature set, but I cant make that assumption anymore.
Moreover, there are various aspects that are still unknown or are
unused by most developers. Did you know for instance that:
- Sun Studio has a garbage collection library that you can use to
keep your memory allocations sane?
- Sun Studio has the world's leading math libraries and that even
the math lib in Linux (libm) is actually based on a free and opensource
form of a library that Sun had released more than a decade back?
- Sun Studio has runtime checking (listen up, all IBM Rational
Purify fans) and that its been in the product for 12+ years and has
been free all these years?
- Sun Studio has had a static lock detection tool (lock lint) for
12+ years and is popular among device driver writers (in Solaris land,
this tool has a variant called warlock) ?
- Sun Studio compilers rarely -if ever- change compatibility. The
last time they did was when Ansi C++ forced it by language change and
that the two options -compat=4 (for pre-ANSI) and -compat=5(default,
ANSI behavior) are still in the compilers, more than 10 years later?
- Sun Studio basic linear algebra library (libsunperf) is better
than even Intel and AMD's specialized libraries on their own platform,
besides working on Solaris and Linux, and SPARC and x86 both?
- Sun Studio has an intervals arithmetic capability?
- Sun Studio has a GCC compatibility set of features that lets
developers use most of the GCC constructs while exploiting all of these
(above) features ?
- Sun Studio Performance Analyzer does a large variety of
application profile detection metrics(more than I can enumerate even in
a reasonable sized blog) from timelines to caller/callee to
source/disassembly to threads to Dataspace profiling to hardware
- Sun works with the Cluster MPI community and releases its own
version of Cluster (OpenMPI) library
And this is just a sample. With over 100 binaries and 200 library
versions included, there is a lot of material that we can talk about.
Finally, lets get beyond the name change with a footnote: this product
has seen so many names over the years that even I may not remember all
of them. In reverse order, some of them are: Sun Studio, Sun ONE
Studio, Forte Developer, Forte Workshop, Sun WorkShop, SunPro,
ProWorks, ProCompilers, SPARCcompilers and some other names that I've
probably forgotten! But the truism behind them all has been: the
compilers and tools have always delivered the best technology of the
time for Performance and Applications Development all these years
And that focus has not changed here
Developers can continue to look upon this offering to deliver the best
performance technologies, the best applications development environment
(and tools) and the most robust and mature technology and what is more,
with Oracle, it will be backed up by an even more complete and competent support program.