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OCaml "reentrant runtime" experimental branch

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Objective Caml is an implementation of the ML language, based on
the Caml Light dialect extended with a complete class-based object system
and a powerful module system in the style of Standard ML.

Objective Caml comprises two compilers. One generates bytecode
which is then interpreted by a C program. This compiler runs quickly,
generates compact code with moderate memory requirements, and is
portable to essentially any 32 or 64 bit Unix platform. Performance of
generated programs is quite good for a bytecoded implementation:
almost twice as fast as Caml Light 0.7. This compiler can be used
either as a standalone, batch-oriented compiler that produces
standalone programs, or as an interactive, toplevel-based system.

The other compiler generates high-performance native code for a number
of processors. Compilation takes longer and generates bigger code, but
the generated programs deliver excellent performance, while retaining
the moderate memory requirements of the bytecode compiler. The
native-code compiler currently runs on the following platforms:

    Intel Pentium processors: PCs under Linux, FreeBSD, NetBSD, OpenBSD,
      Windows, NextStep, Solaris 2, BeOS.
    Alpha processors: Digital/Compaq Alpha machines under
      Digital Unix/Compaq Tru64, Linux, NetBSD and OpenBSD.
    Sparc processors: Sun Sparc under SunOS 4.1, Solaris 2, NetBSD, Linux
    Mips processors: SGI workstations and mainframes under IRIX 6
    HP PA-RISC processors: HP 9000/700 under HPUX 10
    PowerPC processors: IBM RS6000 and PowerPC workstations under AIX 4.3,
                        PowerMacintosh under MkLinux, LinuxPPC, MacOS X
    Strong ARM processors: Corel Netwinder under Linux

Other operating systems for the processors above have not been tested,
but the compiler may work under other operating systems with little work.

Before the introduction of objects, Objective Caml was known as Caml
Special Light. Objective Caml is almost upwards compatible with Caml
Special Light, except for a few additional reserved keywords that have
forced some renamings of standard library functions.


  Changes               what's new with each release
  INSTALL               instructions for installation
  INSTALL.MPW           infos on the Macintosh MPW port of Objective Caml
  LICENSE               license and copyright notice
  Makefile              main Makefile
  README                this file
  README.win32          infos on the MS Windows 98/ME/NT/2000 ports of O.Caml
  asmcomp/              native-code compiler and linker
  asmrun/               native-code runtime library
  boot/                 bootstrap compiler
  bytecomp/             bytecode compiler and linker
  byterun/              bytecode interpreter and runtime system
  config/               autoconfiguration stuff
  debugger/             source-level replay debugger
  driver/               driver code for the compilers
  emacs/                Caml editing mode and debugger interface for GNU Emacs
  lex/                  lexer generator
  maccaml/              the Macintosh GUI
  otherlibs/            several external libraries
  parsing/              syntax analysis
  stdlib/               standard library
  tools/                various utilities
  toplevel/             interactive system
  typing/               typechecking
  utils/                utility libraries
  yacc/                 parser generator


All files marked "Copyright INRIA" in this distribution are copyright
1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001 Institut National de Recherche en
Informatique et en Automatique (INRIA) and distributed under the
conditions stated in file LICENSE.


See the file INSTALL for installation instructions on Unix machines. 
For MS Windows, see README.win32.  For the Macintosh, see INSTALL.MPW.


The Objective Caml manual is distributed in HTML, PDF, Postscript,
DVI, and Emacs Info files.  It can be obtained by anonymous FTP from as described below. It is also available on the World
Wide Web, at


The complete Objective Caml distribution resides on,
and can be accessed through a Web browser at

or directly by anonymous FTP:

        host: (
        directory:  lang/caml-light


There exists a mailing list of users of the Caml implementations
developed at INRIA. The purpose of this list is to share
experience, exchange ideas (and even code), and report on applications
of the Caml language. This list is moderated; messages can be
written in English or in French. The list has about 400 subscribers.

Messages to the list should be sent to:


If you wish to subscribe to this list, please send a message
(including your email address) to:


Archives of the list are available on the World Wide Web at URL

The Usenet news groups and comp.lang.functional
also contains discussions about the ML family of programming languages,
including Caml.


Send your bug reports by E-mail to:


or report them using the Web interface to the bug-tracking system

To be effective, bug reports should include a complete program
(preferably small) that exhibits the unexpected behavior, and the
configuration you are using (machine type, etc).

You can also contact the implementors directly at

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