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Re: Results from running autoupdate on gnulib m4 files

From: Zack Weinberg
Subject: Re: Results from running autoupdate on gnulib m4 files
Date: Sun, 27 Sep 2020 10:14:27 -0400

On Sun, Sep 27, 2020 at 6:29 AM Gavin Smith <gavinsmith0123@gmail.com> wrote:
> Because of the upcoming autoconf 2.70 release gives more warnings, I
> checked the other files in gnulib in the m4 directory with
> autoupdate -v *.m4 2>&1 | tee log

Thanks for doing this.  I was getting set up to do it myself, but I
got hung up on an unrelated problem (the version of "gettext" in
Debian is severely outdated and this makes it hard to run the gnulib
test suite).

The diff produced by autoupdate is mostly not usable as is.   In fact,
it looks to me more like a todo list for bugs and missing features in
autoupdate itself :-/  For instance, replacing
`AC_REQUIRE([AC_HEADER_STDC])` with `AC_REQUIRE([m4_warn([obsolete],
...])` is Just Plain Wrong, as is replacing `pushdef([AC_CHECKING],
[:])` with `pushdef([AS_MESSAGE([checking ...])],[:])`.

However, the change to m4/gethostname.m4 looks correct.

> * Redefinition of AC_CHECKING in several files to silence AC_CHECK_PROG

This was discussed previously at
https://lists.gnu.org/archive/html/bug-gnulib/2020-03/msg00032.html .
It remains my opinion that the correct fix is to convert all of these
to AC_CACHE_CHECK and not try to hide any checks from the person
running configure.


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