[GiNaC-list] questions about CLN build system [Was: about CLN versus win32 patch]

Richard B. Kreckel kreckel at ginac.de
Thu Aug 3 22:11:26 CEST 2006

Sheplyakov Alexei wrote:

>>Okay, but as I mentioned: not all auto* tools are used.
>What is (was) the reason of that? Would you accept a patch which converts
>CLN build system to usual automake/autoconf/libtool?

Let's ask undogmatically: What would be the reason for converting CLN? 
The user who wants to compile the library is confronted with the 
well-known configure / make / make install steps. So, there's adherance 
to quasi-standards. The developer will have to remember that 
Makefile.devel will have to be used instead of autoreconf. Big deal.

It is already autoconfed and libtooled. The only thing is that it 
carries its own copy of some files, but that is (was?) for a good 
reason: It enabled us to actually create the configure script when we 
needed to despite disruptive changes in the macro repository in 
Debian/RedHat/whatever. Okay, so what about automake? CLN's sources are 
modularly structured in a deep hierarchy, not a flat or shallow one. If 
I'm not mistaken, converting it to automake would involve putting a 
Makefile.am in every directory (there are 107 of them) and having to 
list at least every .cc file (there are 854 of them). Quite frankly, the 
current scheme appears much more elegant.

Sure I would accept a patch if it was lightweight and elegant and worked 
well. But I don't think I'm ever going to see one. And I'm sure that 
pursuing such a patch is not worth the effort since it would only save a 
couple of minutes of every aspiring maintainer (how many of these are 
there?). Let's go, fix some serious bugs elsewhere, instead.


Richard B. Kreckel

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