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database buildup and reciepe execution

From: Warlich, Christof
Subject: database buildup and reciepe execution
Date: Mon, 16 Jan 2012 12:21:23 +0100


consider the following makefile:

.PHONY: all
all: PT xxx
xxx: yyy ; cp $< $@
PT: ; touch xxx

As much as I thought I understood, make _first_ builds up its database to 
determine what to do,
and _then_ executes the recipes accoding to that result. But unfortunately, my 
doesn't match the behaviour in the example above:

Let's assume yyy is newer than xxx or that xxx doesn't exist. Why is the 
reciepe belonging to
"xxx: yyy ; cp $< $@" not called after the reciepe belonging to "PT: ; touch 
xxx"? I would have
thought that Make cannot know during buildup of its database that rule "PT: ; 
touch xxx" is going
to update xxx?!

Thanks for any advice to improve my understanding,


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