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Re: WWWLib 5 in LYNX-DEV Lynx 3.0

From: Hiram Lester, Jr.
Subject: Re: WWWLib 5 in LYNX-DEV Lynx 3.0
Date: Thu, 27 Feb 1997 11:00:52 -0600 (CST)

On Wed, 26 Feb 1997, Klaus Weide wrote:

> On Wed, 26 Feb 1997, Hiram Lester, Jr. wrote:
> > On of the major problems with WWWLib 5 (other than the fact that some
> > existing stuff in Lynx's WWWLib would have to either be re-incorporated
> > into the new code or adapted to the new code's way of doing things) is
> > that it relies on GNU Make.  This would be fine for Linux and *BSD boxes,
> > but most other platforms would be required to acquire GNU Make to build a
> > Lynx built with WWWLib 5... :(
> The libwww code has to be massaged so much anyway that you cannot hope to
> incorporate it as-is, installation procedures and all, into the Lynx
> code...  The code itself doesn't depend on a specific Make any more than
> the Lynx code - I think.  You just have to get all thos necessary symbols
> defined and headers included etc., But there is no reason why you have to
> absolutely *have* to get that done with the W3C's autoconf/GNU Make
> procedure.

Go back and look at the docs for it again.  It specifically states that it
requires GNU Make.  I tried compiling it on HP-UX, and it got errors in
the Makefile.  I don't think that there's any reason WHY it should require
GNU Make, and if it is to be integrated into the lynx code at any point,
this restriction should be removed if at all possible.  That's precisely
why autoconfigure is so great is that it does not require the person
building the software to have anything other than /bin/sh.

> I spent a lot of time getting the disk cache to work.  It does work
> somewhat.  Well on the other hand last year I have argued (together with
> Fote) that Lynx doesn't really need a disk cache (mostly because there are
> external caching proxies that can be installed, which probably do a better
> job of caching than Lynx could ever do.  because that is all they do.)
> I still think Lynx doesn't really need one...

I rememeber this issue well.  I'm kinda stuck in the middle somewhere on
this.  It would be nice if it came easily with some of the other things,
but it sounds like it didn't. :)

> If anybody wants to see the current mess, drop me a note...
> It may not work on anything but Linux, I haven't tried to build it
> anywhere else.

Maybe I'll try it out and see if it will compile here.  Dunno when
though... :)

> I think now that the most realistic approach for putting some of this back
> into a public Lynx version is to start with some small (but extensive) 
> changes - basically starting to redo the whole thing.  Like introducing
> some new data structures (HTRequest, HTNet, HTResponse, ...) used
> throughout the libwww5 code, changing all HTStream methods to return a
> result everywhere in the Lynx code.  Those would be changes that would, 
> at first, not change anything in what the code actually does.  But it
> would then be easier to add other pieces; or grab parts from the existing
> libwww5 and use them (maybe the DNS lookup cache...)

That's kind of what I was thinking of.  That was what was behind my
question several months ago about the actual version number of the WWWLib
in Lynx (says 2.14, but some of the stuff mentioned in the WWWLib's
history file for 2.15 mention Lynx).  What I mentioned about the 8.3
filename convention would be to go through the WWWLib's history file and
note where they changed the naming system, and note which files they
renamed and to what names and do the same for the lynx code.  I've got a
list (on my linux box at home?) that I did like this.  There were still a
couple of files with long names even after this.  I presume they were
phased out before the name changes or lynx-specific.  Anyway, this would
be one step, and what you mention would be another good one.  We should
make this a goal.  Since you're a bit more intimate with the WWWLib 5
code, perhaps you can make specific suggestions to those working on the
lynx code as to what data structures, variables, etc. should be
added/changed in the current code to pave the way for the new stuff.

   | Hiram W. Lester, Jr.               | E-Mail: address@hidden    |
   | Computer Science                   | Home page:                    |
   | Middle Tennessee State University  | |

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