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Re: Fw: MKS toolkit the 2nd

From: Paul Eggert
Subject: Re: Fw: MKS toolkit the 2nd
Date: Sun, 8 Sep 2002 01:33:03 -0700 (PDT)

> From: Harlan Stenn <address@hidden>
> Date: Sun, 08 Sep 2002 03:39:04 -0400
> If making config.guess return useful/normal values is a goal, then
> lets get rid of the cpu-vendor-linux-gnu braindamage

To do that you'll first need to fix the GNU coding standards, which
specify the behavior here.  (It is a controversial area, so you'll
have to make a good case.  :-)

> The primary reason for using config.guess is to talk about the total
> environment

No, the primary reason for using config.guess is to talk about the
canonical system name.  This is a relatively-narrow technical
objective; it is a much smaller (and more achievable) goal than
specifying the total environment.

Jeff Conrad's list of five significant things for Microsoft
environments is OK as far as it goes, but that list is too small for
actual environments and I don't see any realistic hope of shoehorning
all the necessary information into the output of "config.guess", even
assuming we could get the coding standards changed.  For most of those
sorts of things it is better to use the Autoconf approach, where you
test for the features that you need, rather than guessing the list of
supported features from the canonical system name (or the "total
environment" name, whatever that would be).  Autoconf and Automake
support most (if not all) of the items that he mentions.

In principle, the Autoconf/Automake approach should work fine on MKS
etc.  There are problems in practice, but they are primarily because
most GNU maintainers have only limited time to deal with the hassles
of platforms that depart widely from the POSIX and/or GNU standards.

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