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Re: AM_*FLAGS and autoconf

From: Alexandre Duret-Lutz
Subject: Re: AM_*FLAGS and autoconf
Date: Wed, 16 Feb 2005 09:43:42 +0100
User-agent: Gnus/5.110003 (No Gnus v0.3) Emacs/21.3.50 (gnu/linux)

>>> "Norman" == Norman Gray <address@hidden> writes:


 Norman> Setting AM_CFLAGS is also out.  The automake
 Norman> documentation talks of this being reserved for the
 Norman> author of, and doesn't mention autoconf at
 Norman> all.

It's OK to AC_SUBST these if you like.  Maybe the manual ought
to speak of the "package maintainer" or anything else that does
not suggest that a " author" can only modify a

 Norman> The FAQ says `You should not add options to these
 Norman> variables from inside configure either', and makes a number of other
 Norman> wise suggestions which I've recently painfully discovered for myself.

"these variables" == user variables.  Is it clear from context?

 Norman> The FAQ's suggests defining differently-named variables and
 Norman> substituting them into the  But this isn't really a
 Norman> solution, as it would require me to add

 Norman> ...

 Norman> at the top of 300+ files, which is exactly the sort of
 Norman> meaningless boilerplate automake is supposed to save us from.

Speaking of boilerplate, my preference would be

include $(top_srcdir)/

at the top of all 300+  Sure, that means changing a
lot of files, but only once.  Then it's easy to modify the
default, and the logic of the will also be easier to
understand for someone reading the

OTOH, I have little experience with such large trees, so maybe
AC_SUBST is more practical.


 Norman> I've also had success with modifying automake so that
 Norman> &read_main_am_file calls &define_configure_variable on all AC_SUBSTed
 Norman> AM_* variables, with the result that AM_CFLAGS+=blah will work.  This
 Norman> appears to match the intent of the preceding call to
 Norman> &define_standard_variables, so this didn't feel outrageous.

I don't understand this.  AFAICT, `AC_SUBST([AM_CPPFLAGS])'
followed by `AM_CPPFLAGS += -DFOO' works out of the box.
(Precisely because &define_standard_variables does call
&define_configure_variable for all AC_SUBSTed variables.)


Alexandre Duret-Lutz

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