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Re: Weird behaviour about system types

From: Nick Bowler
Subject: Re: Weird behaviour about system types
Date: Thu, 4 Feb 2021 11:57:35 -0500

Hi Sébastien,

On 2021-02-04, Sébastien Hinderer <> wrote:
> I am calling the generated configure script as follows:
>   ./configure --build=x86_64-pc-linux-gnu --host=aarch64-linux-gnu
> I am getting the following output:
> checking build system type... x86_64-pc-linux-gnu
> checking host system type... aarch64-unknown-linux-gnu
> checking target system type... aarch64-unknown-linux-gnu
> I am okay with the first line but to absolutely not understandthe second
> and third line. Why do the host and system types contain an "unknown"
> string?
> Since I gave the --host=aarch64-linux-gnu arguemnt, I expected this to
> be the canonical system type. And also, I thought the target system type
> would default to the user-provided host system type, which does not seem
> to be the case.

The system type aarch64-linux-gnu is not in canonical form.  A canonical
system type has three parts: CPU, vendor and OS.

In this case you have specified the host CPU (x86_64 / aarch64) and OS
(linux-gnu), but not the host vendor.  So the canonicalization process
sets the vendor to "unknown" (this transformation is performed by

> Should I then rely on the host_alias and target_alias variables? It
> feels odd because they may not be in canonical form and also this means
> that the target will have to be explicitly given, which I thought I
> don't have to do.

Without knowing what your goals are, I cannot make any recommendation.


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