Trail of Bits releases McSema 2.0: Framework for lifting x86, amd64, and aarch64 program binaries to LLVM bitcode

Heavy lifting with McSema 2.0

Four years ago, we released McSema, our x86 to LLVM bitcode binary translator. Since then, it has stretched and flexed; we added x86-64 support, put it on a performance-focused diet, and improved its usability and documentation. McSema wasn’t the only thing improving these past years, though. At the same time, programs were increasingly adopting modern x86 features like the advanced vector extensions (AVX) instructions, which operate on 256-bit wide vector registers. Adjusting to these changes was back-breaking but achievable work. Then our lifting goals expanded to include AArch64, the architecture used by modern smartphones. That’s when we realized that we needed to step back and strengthen McSema’s core. This change in focus paid off; now McSema can transpile AArch64 binaries into x86-64! Keep reading for more details.[…]

Heavy lifting with McSema 2.0






LLVM 5.0.0 released

Lots of changes for Intel/AMD/ARM/MIPS/PowerPC, eg AMD Rhyzen support. And new PDB tool. Clang has new diagnostic/”lint” abilities. The static analyzer uses Microsoft’s Z3 solver. New C and C++ features (wow, C++ is at C++17 already!). Many other changes! I wish I had time to look at it more detail today… 😦





LLVM can now emit/parse/diff Windows PDBs

PDBs are the sidecar symbol files for Windows. The spec used to be private, now is public, and now it is great to see Clang supporting them. Last time I looked, GCC does not support them.



ARM updates C/C++ compilers

ARM has updated it’s C/C++ compiler toolchains.

C and C++ update for Arm Compiler 6:
As you are hopefully aware, Arm Compiler 6 has been available for 3+ years now, and has grown in maturity, and optimization quality release on release. As I write this, the latest available version is 6.8, and 6.6 has been qualified for use in safety-related development. We offer full support for the latest Arm processors, across the Cortex-A, R, and M, and SecureCore families. Arm Compiler 6 is available within DS-5 and Keil MDK toolchains. Furthermore the qualified version is available for purchase stand-alone. Arm Compiler 6 is based on the LLVM framework, using the modern Clang compiler front-end, and this is reflected in the name of the executable, Armclang. The compiler is then integrated into the full Arm tools suite, enabling use of legacy assembler code built with Armasm, as well as gas format assembler directly with Armclang. Finally the Arm linker (Armlink) brings in the optimized C and C++ libraries, or if desired the size optimized Arm C MicroLib library, as well as (optionally) implementing link-time optimizations across the source code.[…]



KLEE 1.4.0 released

Cristian Cadar announced the 1.4.0 release of KLEE.

KLEE 1.4.0 is now available at

Lots of new changes, in particular a new CMake build system, support for  some missing features for LLVM 3.4 (and partial support for 3.5 and  3.6), better support for MacOS, support for release documentation (as in  http://klee.github.io/releases/docs/v1.4.0/) and many other  optimizations, features and bug fixes.[…]

Full announcement: