Nuitka Release 0.5.13

This is to inform you about the new stable release of Nuitka. It is the extremely compatible Python compiler. Please see the page "What is Nuitka?" for an overview.

This release contains the first use of SSA for value propagation and massive amounts of bug fixes and optimization. Some of the bugs that were delivered as hotfixes, were only revealed when doing the value propagation as they still could apply to real code.

Bug Fixes

  • Fix, relative imports in packages were not working with absolute imports enabled via future flags. Fixed in 0.5.12.1 already.
  • Loops were not properly degrading knowledge from inside the loop at loop exit, and therefore this could have lead missing checks and releases in code generation for cases, for del statements in the loop body. Fixed in 0.5.12.1 already.
  • The or and and re-formulation could trigger false assertions, due to early releases for compatibility. Fixed in 0.5.12.1 already.
  • Fix, optimizion of calls of constant objects (always an exception), crashed the compiler. This corrects Issue#202. Fixed in 0.5.12.2 already.
  • Standalone: Added support for site.py installations with a leading def or class statement, which is defeating our attempt to patch __file__ for it. This corrects Issue#189.
  • Compatibility: In full compatibility mode, the tracebacks of or and and expressions are now as wrong as they are in CPython. Does not apply to --improved mode.
  • Standalone: Added missing dependency on QtGui by QtWidgets for PyQt5.
  • MacOS: Improved parsing of otool output to avoid duplicate entries, which can also be entirely wrong in the case of Qt plugins at least.
  • Avoid relative paths for main program with file reference mode original, as it otherwise changes as the file moves.
  • MinGW: The created modules depended on MinGW to be in PATH for their usage. This is no longer necessary, as we now link these libraries statically for modules too.
  • Windows: For modules, the option --run to immediately load the modules had been broken for a while.
  • Standalone: Ignore Windows DLLs that were attempted to be loaded, but then failed to load. This happens e.g. when both PySide and PyQt are installed, and could cause the dreaded conflicting DLLs message. The DLL loaded in error is now ignored, which avoids this.
  • MinGW: The resource file used might be empty, in which case it doesn't get created, avoiding an error due to that.
  • MinGW: Modules can now be created again. The run time relative code uses an API that is WinXP only, and MinGW failed to find it without guidance.

Optimization

  • Make direct calls out of called function creations. Initially this applies to lambda functions only, but it's expected to become common place in coming releases. This is now 20x faster than CPython.

    # Nuitka avoids creating a function object, parsing function arguments:
    (lambda x:x)(something)
    
  • Propagate assignments from non-mutable constants forward based on SSA information. This is the first step of using SSA for real compile time optimization.

  • Specialized the creation of call nodes at creation, avoiding to have all kinds be the most flexible form (keyword and plain arguments), but instead only what kind of call they really are. This saves lots of memory, and makes the tree faster to visit.

  • Added support for optimizing the slice built-in with compile time constant arguments to constants. The re-formulation for slices in Python3 uses these a lot. And the lack of this optimization prevented a bunch of optimization in this area. For Python2 the built-in is optimized too, but not as important probably.

  • Added support for optimizing isinstance calls with compile time constant arguments. This avoids static exception raises in the exec re-formulation which tests for file type, and then optimization couldn't tell that a str is not a file instance. Now it can.

  • Lower in-place operations on immutable types to normal operations. This will allow to compile time compute these more accurately.

  • The re-formulation of loops puts the loop condition as a conditional statement with break. The not that needs to apply was only added in later optimization, leading to unnecessary compile time efforts.

  • Removed per variable trace visit from optimization, removing useless code and compile time overhead. We are going to optimize things by making decision in assignment and reference nodes based on forward looking statements using the last trace collection.

New Features

  • Added experimental support for Python 3.5, which seems to be passing the test suites just fine. The new @ matrix multiplicator operators are not yet supported though.
  • Added support for patching source on the fly. This is used to work around a (now fixed) issue with numexpr.cpuinfo making type checks with the is operation, about the only thing we cannot detect.

Organizational

  • Added repository for Ubuntu Vivid (15.04) for download. Removed Ubuntu Saucy and Ubuntu Raring package downloads, these are no longer supported by Ubuntu.
  • Added repository for Debian Stretch, after Jessie release.
  • Make it more clear in the documentation that in order to compile Python3, a Python2 is needed to execute Scons, but that the end result is a Python3 binary.
  • The PyLint checker tool now can operate on directories given on the command line, and whitelists an error that is Windows only.

Cleanups

  • Split up standalone code further, moving depends.exe handling to a separate module.
  • Reduced code complexity of scons interface.
  • Cleaned up where trace collection is being done. It was partially still done inside the collection itself instead in the owner.
  • In case of conflicting DLLs for standalone mode, these are now output with nicer formatting, that makes it easy to recognize what is going on.
  • Moved code to fetch depends.exe to dedicated module, so it's not as much in the way of standalone code.

Tests

  • Made BuiltinsTest directly executable with Python3.
  • Added construct test to demonstrate the speed up of direct lambda calls.
  • The deletion of @test for the CPython test suite is more robust now, esp. on Windows, the symbolic links are now handled.
  • Added test to cover or usage with in-place assignment.
  • Cover local relative import from . with absolute_import future flag enabled.
  • Again, more basic tests are now directly executable with Python3.

Summary

This release is major due to amount of ground covered. The reduction in memory usage of Nuitka itself (the C++ compiler will still use much memory) is very massive and an important aspect of scalability too.

Then the SSA changes are truly the first sign of major improvements to come. In their current form, without eliminating dead assignments, the full advantage is not taken yet, but the next releases will do this, and that's a major milestone to Nuitka.

The other optimization mostly stem from looking at things closer, and trying to work towards function in-lining, for which we are making a lot of progress now.

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