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RE: Future plans for Autotools

Subject: RE: Future plans for Autotools
Date: Thu, 13 May 2021 01:54:56 +0000

Hi Karl,

Regarding the possible addition of a libtool option to ignore .la files, I 
would need to take a deeper look into how libtool works (I have only scratched 
the surface and experimented with it as a "black box" so far, but If I do get 
around to it, I will definitely send a patch or post it here).

The strong link between autoconf and automake is fine for me. I remarked on 
some slight discrepancies (multiple vs single generated ".h" files assumed), 
but this is really not a showstopper.

One thing I might try to look at is how to handle dependencies in Fortran the 
way they are handled in C. If this depends on support from the compiler, I am 
afraid that as always, there may be no "standard" compiler command syntax, but 
if at least there is a "common" one, that would help. So I'll share anything 
interesting I find on this when I find some time, though it might wait several 
weeks. If C++ precompiled headers use the same logic, it will add additional 

Best regards,


De : <>
Envoyé : jeudi 13 mai 2021 03:20
Cc :
Objet : Re: Future plans for Autotools

Hi Yvan - sorry for the delayed reply.

    While configure/automale/libtool seem to be designed to work together,

Yes, they were. It seems your major issues are with libtool. I can
(uselessly) sympathize, but unfortunately that's all I can do. Libtool
is currently unmaintained (according to GNU records), so until someone
volunteers to work on it, there will presumably be no further changes to
it. (Maybe you or someone reading this wants to take up the challenge?)

    - but when it encounters .la files with incorrect .la files, libtool
    adds the incorrect dependencies or options, with no workaround

If you (or anyone) can provide a patch for that specific critical issue
in libtool, it might be possible to somehow make a bug fix release.

    - or make them more modular, and better able to work
    independently. This is probably more of a documentation / example
    code issue than an actual development issue.

I expect you know this, but Automake completely depends on
Autoconf. That's not going to change, in the current reality. OTOH,
using libtool is completely optional.  Many auto{make,conf} projects
don't use libtool.

For Automake, and I expect for Autoconf, specific documentation
suggestions are welcome, but I at least can't write anything from
"make them more modular", however much I agree in principle.

There are quite a few "best practices" autotools documents around, some
written by past autotools developers, others by autotools users. Sounds
like you have enough experience that you could write your own useful
addition :).

Best regards,

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