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Re: cross-compiling philosophy

From: Guido Draheim
Subject: Re: cross-compiling philosophy
Date: Thu, 30 Oct 2003 01:29:22 +0100
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; U; Linux i686; en-US; rv:1.3) Gecko/20030313

Paul Eggert wrote:
Larry Doolittle <address@hidden> writes:

Comments?  If I developed, tested, and submitted a patch,
would anybody look at it?

Yay!  I would!  (But it'd be after 2.58 of course.)

Here are some more detailed thoughts:

1. Add a new flag, like "CROSS_RUN_SCRIPT", that
  defines how to run programs on the host.

Should the maintainer be required to define the cross-run script?
I'd think that often this would be up to the installer.  So, shouldn't
"configure" have an option to specify the cross-run script?  E.g.,
"configure --cross-run=/my/platform/target/run-on-target".

2. Add new macro AC_TRY_COMMAND_HOST, that uses
  CROSS_RUN_SCRIPT if cross-compiling, otherwise
  falls back to AC_TRY_COMMAND.

Shouldn't AC_TRY_COMMAND do this?  I'd think it'd be the normal case.

That is, I would expect AC_TRY_COMMAND to be equivalent to
that runs on the build system (useful for deducing things about which
compiler we're using, say) but normally people are interested in
trying to run the package, not to run tools used to build the package.

Yes, that's one side of the problem I have encountered with some
specialized software. Especially deep-embedded software likes to
have its own optimizer and module stuff that needs to run on the
build host.

Perhaps we should have some brainstorming session about better
crosscompile support, e.g. I have a strong need for automatic
staging area support since the embedded platform is usually
contructed from multiple small libs and apps. There are quite
some wrapper scripts around each to get away with autotools
not being able to check it out all on itself.

Likewise there are some misalignments around, e.g. we set most
tools as $host-$tool in crosscompile mode but is
selected on $prefix alone which per default is not set to
anything contain $host either. The ultimate goal IYAM should
be to make crosscompiling a package as easy as saying
configure --host=

btw, and slightly offtopic, last time i did look at a debian system
I ran across a projectthat promises to build crosscompile tools as
easy as installing a package. true or just on the way? me no time to
get into this, ye know :/

-- guido                        

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