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From Leonard Lausen <lau...@apache.org>
Subject Update on non-compliant releases on repository.apache.org and how to obtain a compliant build
Date Fri, 19 Jun 2020 00:40:51 GMT
As per the consensus in [1], I requested INFRA to delete the MXNet convenience
binaries on repository.apache.org [2].

Zach previously offered to organize a third-party Maven distribution. However,
based on recently updated version 0.4 of the draft Apache Downstream
Distribution Branding Policy published in June 2020, the ASF does not allow the
use of the MXNet for referring to a non-compliant distribution, taking the
position that this would constitute a trademark infringement. Thus such third-
party distributions are required to happen under a name not trademarked by the
ASF. [3]

On the question of building compliant CPU convenience binaries that can be
distributed under the name MXNet, ASF now agrees that the previous stance of
"libgfortran.so" is GPL and can't be distributed is incorrect based on the GCC
Runtime Library Exception [4]. libgfortran.so itself still has a runtime
dependency on pure GPL libquadmath.so, which can't be redistributed by ASF
projects, but (unlike libgfortran.so) libquadmath.so has a stable ABI and we can
ask users to install libquadmath.so on their systems to use the MXNet
convenience binary.

Instead of relying on the GNU Fortran compiler and introducing the
libquadmath.so dependency, I tried using the Flang Fortran compiler [5]. In
principle, it works well. But there are still a couple of bugs in OpenBLAS
and/or Flang which mean that one needs to build OpenBLAS with -O1 optimization
instead of -O2 to pass the test-suite. [6] This may be fixed in the next
OpenBLAS release. One reason is that Flang performs more aggressive optimization
and vectorization, meaning that once these bugs are fixed we may also find speed
improvements by switching to Flang toolchain.

Best regards
Leonard

[1]: 
https://lists.apache.org/thread.html/r9a949761ce5b9b40fc9404b44db012797a50e490163f5ae616428096%40%3Cdev.mxnet.apache.org%3E
[2]: https://issues.apache.org/jira/browse/INFRA-20442
[3]: 
https://web.archive.org/web/20200612172050/www.apache.org/foundation/marks/downstream.html
[4]: https://issues.apache.org/jira/browse/LEGAL-523
[5]: https://github.com/apache/incubator-mxnet/pull/18513
[6]: https://github.com/xianyi/OpenBLAS/issues/2650#issuecomment-643685423


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