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[Bug ld/19254] New: "too many sections" when linking COFF executables

From: olsner at gmail dot com
Subject: [Bug ld/19254] New: "too many sections" when linking COFF executables
Date: Tue, 17 Nov 2015 10:48:47 +0000


            Bug ID: 19254
           Summary: "too many sections" when linking COFF executables
           Product: binutils
           Version: 2.25
            Status: NEW
          Severity: normal
          Priority: P2
         Component: ld
          Assignee: unassigned at sourceware dot org
          Reporter: olsner at gmail dot com
  Target Milestone: ---

When linking an executable out of many object files with many sections, it
seems that if the total number of input sections is larger than COFF/PE's
maximum the linking fails.

I would expect those sections to get merged together into a single .text
section (and .data etc), and so the final executable should have much less than
32k sections and not risk hitting the limit. I'm guessing the section number
limit is checked when loading everything in, before the linker script gets to
merge sections?

The objective was to use --gc-sections (e.g. with -ffunction-sections, though
in this case actually https://ghc.haskell.org/trac/ghc/ticket/8405), but I
don't think that is actually relevant to the problem. Even if you don't GC
sections, they should get merged when linking executables as I understand it.

This was using binutils 2.25.1 on mingw/x86_64.

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