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Re: Suppressing native compilation (short and long term)

From: Stefan Monnier
Subject: Re: Suppressing native compilation (short and long term)
Date: Mon, 03 Oct 2022 09:07:52 -0400
User-agent: Gnus/5.13 (Gnus v5.13) Emacs/29.0.50 (gnu/linux)

AFAICT so far I've heard of two reasons to "disable automatic native

A) Avoid the "uncontrolled" (mostly in terms of *when* it happens)
   resource usage associated with it (e.g. battery).

B) Avoid writing to $HOME.

For (A), I think that (setq native-comp-deferred-compilation nil) seems
perfectly sufficient (you can set it early in your (early) init file and if
every blue moon some native compilation still happens because of a file
loaded before that `setq` it shouldn't be a big deal).

For (B) I seem to remember that it's a problem that goes a bit further
than just native compilation (we've had bug reports about other files
being silently written to ~/.emacs.d in the past and I'd be surprised if
there aren't still many such cases, especially if we consider third
party packages).  So if avoiding all files under $HOME is important,
I suspect the only reliable answer is to set $HOME elsewhere (and if
you run Emacs under `su`, make sure you use `su -`).

This said, we generally do make efforts to try and avoid writing
silently to ~/.emacs.d, so maybe we should rethink our choice of
~/.emacs.d/eln-cache as the default location.
E.g. maybe when run as root, we should write .eln files somewhere under
something like /var/cache?  And maybe when not run as root we should
favor something underneath ~/.cache?

        Stefan "who finds the idea of running Emacs as root a bit scary"

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