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autoconf in pure MSVC environment?

From: John W. Eaton
Subject: autoconf in pure MSVC environment?
Date: Tue, 7 Sep 2004 11:42:55 -0400

On  6-Sep-2004, Brandon J. Van Every <address@hidden> wrote:

| How do I set up autoconf on Windows *without* any Cygwin or Mingw
| compilers or header files?  I only want a native MSVC environment, with
| typical mainstream Windows SDKs.  I don't want any UNIX environment at
| all, except what autoconf itself must have to run.  i.e. a shell, get m4
| working.  Would love to get rid of the UNIX shell if that's possible as
| well, but I suspect it isn't.
| Why bother in this way?
| Typically, someone writes some 'great' code on UNIX that uses autoconf.
| Then someone ports that code to a Cygwin or Mingw environment on
| Windows, without too much trouble.  *Then* someone like me comes along
| and tries to get rid of the project's UNIX dependencies.  Many apps
| don't need UNIX dependencies, they just have them because that's where
| the app was originally developed.

Can you please explain why this matters?

If I install some proprietary binary only commericial software for
Windows, it may come with any number of add-on libraries and support
programs that are hidden behind the scenes.  Why is that any different
than having a set of POSIX compatibility libraries and support
programs hidden behind the scenes?

When you say you remove the UNIX dependencies, do you mean that you
litter the code with

  #ifdef MSVC

or do you try to isolate and duplicate the functionality in a
compatibility library?  For clarity, it would seem better to introduce
some abstraction and use a compatibility library, but then if you are
going to do that, then why not just use Cyginw?

This is a serious question, and I'd like to have some feedback because
people often say they want to make GNU Octave work on Windows systems
without Cygwin.  Although possible, doing that requires extra effort,
and I still fail to see any significant benefit from doing it.



-- | | Peace would shock and awe me.

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