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Re: Install Autoconf's .m4f files into /var?

From: Ralf Wildenhues
Subject: Re: Install Autoconf's .m4f files into /var?
Date: Tue, 14 Nov 2006 21:13:05 +0100
User-agent: Mutt/1.5.13 (2006-08-11)

[ adding bug-automake ]

Hello Ben, Romain,

Thanks for the report.

* Romain Lenglet wrote on Tue, Nov 14, 2006 at 06:36:36PM CET:
> The motivation is to let Debian packages add m4 files directly into
> Autoconf's directories, and rebuild the autotest.m4f file at postinst.

This will make it even less predictable for users what they can expect
when they have Autoconf-x.y.

> Adding M4 macros directly into Autoconf is mandatory when some macros
> make aclocal crash. For instance, language-support macros must have
> parenthesis in their names, which makes aclocal choke.

Sounds to me like a bug report against Automake (to which aclocal
belongs) and a fix there would be the most appropriate, no?

> For instance,
> see macro AC_LANG_PROGRAM(C) in c.m4, or AC_LANG_PROGRAM(Erlang) in
> erlang.m4. Such macros *must* be added directly into Autoconf, since
> they cannot be parsed by aclocal due to bugs in aclocal.

IMHO the wrong reasoning.  You can still dump them into an acinclude.m4
file in the top directory of your project, or reference them from there.

> In addition, I suggest to make addition+inclusion of M4 files easier,
> by adding the following line at the end of
> /usr/share/autoconf/autoconf/autoconf.m4:
> m4_include([/var/lib/autoconf/autoconf/autoconf-includes.m4])

Please, let's not create yet another way to add macro files.  Let's fix
aclocal, or get rid of it in when we have something better.  That's my
gut reaction at least.


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