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Re: Making Autoconf 2.70 happen in the near future

From: Zack Weinberg
Subject: Re: Making Autoconf 2.70 happen in the near future
Date: Tue, 10 Mar 2020 11:28:32 -0400

On Mon, Mar 9, 2020 at 5:53 PM Michael Orlitzky <address@hidden> wrote:
> Thanks for doing this. Two things might make Gentoo an attractive test case:
>   1. We have the git HEAD of autoconf packaged already, so you can
>      easily install it with
>        $ ACCEPT_KEYWORDS="**" emerge sys-devel/autoconf
>   2. The entire distribution is source-based, and whenever we need to
>      patch the build system of a package that uses autotools, we run
>      reautoconf and regenerate the configure script as part of the
>      normal package installation process.
> The success or failure of the subsequent build isn't a perfect indicator
> of autoconf's correctness, but any (as of yet unreported) build failures
> would be interesting.

Thanks for the suggestion!  I have no experience with Gentoo myself
but I've made a note to look at doing this at some point.  You say you
automatically regenerate the configure script for any package that
needs to patch the build system, but do you have a way to direct a
bootstrap cycle to *unconditionally* regenerate the configure scripts
for each package?

> Since we depend so heavily on autoconf, I'm sure there are lots of
> developers and users who would be willing to volunteer as crash test
> dummies as well. We do this every time there's a new major version of
> GCC. Perhaps if you cut a release candidate after fixing the test
> failures, I could popularize it on the mailing lists and ask people to
> CC you on any suspicious build-failure bug reports.

A widely popularized beta release or two would be a good idea,
considering how long it's been. I can generate an unofficial beta
tarball but I don't believe I have the ability to upload anything to Perhaps Eric or Paul would be willing to do that once we
get a little further along in the process.


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