With the recent changes at Mozilla, some may be worried about what this means for SpiderMonkey. The team continues to remain strong, supported and is excited to show off a lot of cool things this year and into the future.
👷🏽♀️ New features
- Matthew implemented private class fields, behind a pref. He also added support for adding private class fields to proxies.
- Adam implemented support for private methods and accessors, behind a pref.
- Adam added more Iterator helper methods.
- Jeff landed more changes for
- André implemented
- Yulia started implementing Top-level await.
🗑️ Garbage Collection
- Jon moved more decommit code to the background thread.
- Jon added prefs and improved heuristics for the number of helper threads doing GC work.
- Yoshi added GC sub-categories to the profiler.
- Paul removed some unused GC telemetry code to improve memory usage.
- Jon enabled compacting for ObjectGroups.
- Yoshi fixed shutdown GCs to not start compression tasks.
Stencil is our project to create an explicit interface between the frontend (parser, bytecode emitter) and the rest of the VM, decoupling those components. This lets us improve performance, simplify a lot of code and improve bytecode caching. It also makes it possible to rewrite our frontend in Rust (see SmooshMonkey item below).
We expect to switch the frontend to use
ParserAtoms in the next Nightly cycle (Firefox 82). At that point the frontend will work without doing any GC allocations and will be more independent from the rest of the engine, unblocking further (performance) improvements.
- Arai decoupled Stencil structures more from the frontend data structures.
- Ted made module parsing work with Stencils and without allocating GC things.
- Ted deferred GC allocation of
- Ted cleaned up scope/environment handling.
- Arai added a
dumpStencil(code)function to the JS shell to print the Stencil data structures.
- Kannan landed more changes preparing for the switch to
SmooshMonkey is our project to reimplement the frontend in a safe language (Rust) and will make it easier to implement new features and improve long-term maintainability of the code base.
- Arai hooked up the output of the Rust frontend to Stencil’s function data structures.
WarpBuilder is the JIT project to replace the frontend of our optimizing JIT (IonBuilder) and the engine’s Type Inference mechanism with a new MIR builder based on compiling CacheIR to MIR. WarpBuilder will let us improve security, performance, memory usage and maintainability of the whole engine. Since the previous newsletter we’ve ported a lot of optimizations to CacheIR and Warp.
- André, Caroline, Iain, Jan and Tom ported optimizations for many builtins to CacheIR and Warp.
- They also implemented a lot of CacheIR instructions in the transpiler.
- Iain landed support for Trial Inlining of JS functions.
- Tom optimized code generated for
for-ofloops and adding new properties to objects.
- Caroline fixed and improved JSON output for the CacheIR health analysis tool.
- Jan made IsPackedArray, MaybeInIteration and the arguments analysis work without depending on IonBuilder and TI.
🧹 Miscellaneous changes
- Tom fixed syntax errors in regular expressions to use the correct source location.
- Jan added a cache for atomizing strings to fix a performance cliff affecting Reddit.
- Yoshi landed more changes for integrating SpiderMonkey’s helper threads with the browser’s thread pool.
- Philip Chimento added public APIs for working with BigInts.
- Evan Welsh added a public API for enabling code coverage.
- Kanishk fixed an over-recursion bug in
- Logan cleaned up Debugger frames code.
- Jan optimized and cleaned up some jump relocation and jump code on x64 and ARM64.
- Tom removed some
Datefunctions. This improved certain error messages.
- André converted code from
ToPropertyKeyto fix subtle correctness bugs.
- Jeff moved more code out of
jsfriendapi.hinto smaller headers.
- Barun renamed
GCAbortReasonto fix a conflict with
- Steve added an option to the
shortestPathstest function to find out why a given JS value is alive.
- Steve enabled the JS gdb prettyprinters for the firefox binary as well as making them independent from the working directory.
- The Cranelift team landed various changes to prepare for enabling Cranelift by default for ARM64 platforms in Nightly. On ARM64 we currently only have the Wasm Baseline compiler so it’s the first platform where Cranelift will be rolled out.
- Ryan implemented non-nullable references.
- Lars landed optimizations for SIMD and implemented some experimental Wasm SIMD opcodes.
- Lars added alignment of loop headers to the Ion backend.