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[cdt-dev] Minutes Debug Conference Call

Hey gang,


We had a conference call today with all the committers working on CDT Debug as well as representatives from Wind River who are working on Device Debugging as part of the DSDP project. They included John Cortell (Freescale), Ken Ryall (Nokia), Mikhail K (QNX->ARM), Doug Gaff, Pawel Piech, and Dave Daoust (Wind River) as well as myself.


Essentially, the objective of the meeting was to go over what we wanted to do from a big picture perspective for CDT Debug for 4.0 and beyond. This has really come to a head now that Mikhail has moved on and will not be working much on our MI integration. We also wanted to see if there were any synergies possible with Wind River’s work on a new Debug Model aimed primarily at device debugging, but also will be useful for desktop debugging (and I guess remote server debugging as well which is a mix of the two). Its main advantage is the flexibility it offers debugger integrators and that it takes advantage of the new flexible Debug Platform APIs that have gone into Eclipse 3.2.


The conclusion that we came to and want feedback on from the community on is for the CDT to adopt Wind River’s Debug Model called the Debugger Services Framework (DSF). In the short term, at least for CDT 4.0 and possibly beyond, this will mean that the CDT will have two debug models that integrators can use. We will keep the CDI going since at least Ken and John will be building their commercial debug integrations against this interface and will be adding minor features to it. The hope is that the DSF will be so good that we can eventually deprecate the CDI and move everyone over but we want to wait for the DSF to mature before making that decision. It may also be possible to build a CDI fa├žade on the DSF to ease the transition.


QNX will continue their involvement in MI since we depend on it commercially. As part of that we will be porting the MI integration to DSF for 4.0 to ensure we have a good quality exemplary tool for DSF and to ensure the sustainability of CDT’s MI integration. However, we will likely keep the CDI/MI integration around as well to ensure minimal impact to existing MI-based integrations.


So over the next year or two, we’ll have a bit of an explosion of options for debug integrators. We will work hard to hide this complexity from the users. We did express the desire to standardize on the DSF to ensure we have a sustainable path going forward. We just want to stay pragmatic about it and ensure that vendors who have debug integrations have the option to migrate when it makes sense for them to do so.


So for next steps, Pawel will be submitting his code to the DD project for all of us to look at. This will include a minimal MI integration. We’ll then look at how to extend that integration to the same level as our CDI/MI integration. This will all feed into a presentation that we’ll be giving at the CDT Fall Conference in September where we’ll be looking to close on the plan for CDT 4.0.


We are keenly interested in what other members of the community think of this proposal and will consider any and all feedback. Just do it on the cdt-debug-dev list J. Also for those vendors working on debug integrations, you may wish to step up your participation to make sure your interests are our interests too.



Doug Schaefer, QNX Software Systems

Eclipse CDT Project Lead, Tools PMC member



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