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Re: Detecting FreeBSD's make

From: Paul Smith
Subject: Re: Detecting FreeBSD's make
Date: Tue, 06 Nov 2007 19:36:40 -0500

On Tue, 2007-11-06 at 19:46 +0000, Harlan Stenn wrote:
> I'm getting bitten by the VPATH-handling differences between FreeBSD's
> make and gmake.

The automake manual says (somewhere) that the only version of make that
correctly supports out-of-the-tree builds is GNU make.  The VPATH
capability in every other version of make that I'm aware of, including
BSD make and SysV make, is just plain borked (IMNSHO).

My personal suggestion would be to follow that advice and simply
document that out-of-the-tree builds are not supported by your project
unless the user uses GNU make.

It's very difficult for autotools to detect and work around make issues,
because there's absolutely no guarantee that the "make" program that
autoconf/etc. finds and uses will be the one the user actually invokes
to build the project.  Users are not accustomed to saying "./configure
MAKE=gmake" or similar.

 Paul D. Smith <address@hidden>          Find some GNU make tips at:            
 "Please remain calm...I may be mad, but I am a professional." --Mad Scientist

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