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Re: [PATCH] AC_CONFIG_MACRO_DIRS: improve tracing and add sanity checks

From: Nick Bowler
Subject: Re: [PATCH] AC_CONFIG_MACRO_DIRS: improve tracing and add sanity checks
Date: Mon, 12 Nov 2012 10:42:20 -0500
User-agent: Mutt/1.5.21 (2010-09-15)

On 2012-11-09 15:53 -0700, Eric Blake wrote:
> Too many legacy tools exist for us to unilaterally quit supporting
> AC_CONFIG_MACRO_DIR - it is feasible for someone to want their
> package to bootstrap with both automake 1.13 and libtool 2.4.2,
> where the newer automake will only trace the new style of multiple
> directory listings, but the older libtool does a sed and settles
> on the one use of the old name.  So, we let both macros forward
> to a new tracing macro, which also has the benefit of sanitizing
> calls into one directory per trace; we also ensure that the old
> macro is always traced, and appears at most once and before any
> use of the new macro.

If the goal is compatibility with existing behaviour of libtool,
then we must allow multiple invocations of AC_CONFIG_MACRO_DIR and
they must emit AC_CONFIG_MACRO_DIR_TRACE in the reverse order.

>From the look of things, this patch intentionally breaks such
invocations, which currently work (since AC_CONFIG_MACRO_DIR
doesn't do anything).

I still maintain that we should not touch this macro at all.  No
released version of libtool requires AC_CONFIG_MACRO_DIR to be used
in  Any package targeting compatibility with as-yet-
unreleased versions of automake (read: such packages are by definition
new developments) and old versions of libtool can simply elide the
macro from their, and things will work.

Nick Bowler, Elliptic Technologies (

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