Illumos is an OpenSolaris-derived Unix system, and no Unix is complete without a C compiler or two. And with a name like Portable C Compiler (PCC), you would think that would be a great bet to get up and running on Illumos. That’s probably what [Brian Callahan] thought, too, but found out otherwise.

PCC already generates x86 code, so that wasn’t the problem. It was a matter of reconfiguring the compiler for the environment, ironic since PCC probably started on true Unix but now won’t work with 64-bit Solaris-like operating system. According to the post:

It looks like some time ago someone added configuration for 32-bit x86 and SPARC64 support for the Solaris family. But no one ever tried to support 64-bit x86. So first we had to teach the configure script for both pcc and pcc-libs that 64-bit x86 Solaris

While there were some code changes, much of the problem centered around differences in tools available under Linux vs Illuminos. It is an interesting look at moving a tool over and gives you a taste of what life under Illumos might be like.

We always think we want to try one of the Illumos distributions or even Solaris proper. Reports of its death were apparently premature.