Fun with build machines
Perhaps you've noticed that the packages for CentOS 4 and OSX Tiger/10.4 haven't been updated lately. Welcome to dead hard drives.
For a long while, I used VMware Server for guest OSes to build the various rpm and windows packages. This mostly worked well. And then both drives in the physical server I used to host the vmware instance failed. A two-drive RAID 1 array doesn't like it when both drives fail. I replaced the drives, re-installed Debian, and attempted to install vmware server again. The vmware kernel module refused to load. I tried the old tricks to get it to work, nothing. I finally looked at some script/patch that I found via Google, and got the module to load. Then my license key didn't work anymore.
In frustration, I gave up and installed VirtualBox. CentOS 4 defaults to using an SMP kernel on install, which Virtualbox (aka qemu) doesn't like at all. CentOS 4 installs just fine, it just won't boot after install. I haven't had time to further fix the problem. For the time being, there's no CentOS 4 (Redhat 4 rpms) for Tor.
As for OSX, well, there was no raid array of any kind, just a single drive in a mac mini. It died in a fit of 0xE0030005 (Undefined) errors and now won't boot at all. A new drive is on the way. I expect to have OSX Tiger/10.4 packages in a week or so. The good news is that the Panther Mac continues to work just fine.
Perhaps it's time to start using Amazon's EC2 or something similar instead of messing with all this hardware and virtualization software. Or maybe I should work on hacking OSX 10.4 and 10.5 into virtualbox.
** Update 2008-08-06: new drive was DOA. And it appears the logic board on the mac mini is fried. Ugh.
Well, we don't build the osx packages using xcode, but rather configure and makefiles. Converting this system to xcode is not so easy; therefore this makes backporting challenging. The other problem is I only have an older OS to use, not a newer. So I can't forward compile the libs and such.
There's a little of misunderstood here :-p
When I was talking about Xcode I was referring to the Xcode package itself rather then the single program.
And installing the Xcode package brings you a whole toolchain (glibc, gcc and binutils) plus a gui program called Xcode (and, well, several others) ;-)
So, in the end, there's no porting involving: you install Xcode and legacy tools (or the two versions of the package) and you can build programs with the toolchain of your current system and with the toolchains of the previous ones.
But yes, the problem regarding the version of the only working OS X is a stopper right now :(