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Re: Officially require GNU Make to build Guile? (was Re: Bootstrap optim

From: Greg Troxel
Subject: Re: Officially require GNU Make to build Guile? (was Re: Bootstrap optimization)
Date: Sun, 28 Oct 2018 20:12:32 -0400
User-agent: Gnus/5.13 (Gnus v5.13) Emacs/24.5 (berkeley-unix)

Mark H Weaver <address@hidden> writes:

> Hmm, good question.  I'm not sure, not because 2002 is too recent, but
> rather because I'm not sure that GNU Make should be a requirement for
> building Guile.
> Guile's README does not list GNU Make in the section of "Required
> External Packages".  This, along with the fact that we use Automake
> which is clearly designed to produce portable Makefiles, makes me
> inclined to think that if Guile depends on non-standard extensions in
> GNU Make, that this is a bug.

Agreed that requiring GNU Make is a bug.

> On the other hand, if this is a bug, it seems that we've had this bug
> for several years at least, and that non-GNU systems are already working
> around it by adding GNU Make as a requirement.  For example, the Guile 2
> packages in the OpenBSD and FreeBSD ports collections already list GNU
> Make as a prerequisite for building Guile 2.  Our README also has
> "Special Instructions For Some Systems" which mentions that gmake is
> required on FreeBSD 11.0.  However, there's no mention of any other
> non-GNU systems requiring GNU Make to build Guile.

NetBSD's pkgsrc (which is portable to about 20 systems) also is marked
to need GNU make.  Practically, it's not a problem, because packaging
systems have to deal with many programs that require GNU make anway.

> So, we now have a choice.  We can fully embrace a requirement on GNU
> Make, or we can treat it as a bug to be fixed.
> I'm still inclined to consider it a bug, but maybe we can have the best
> of both worlds here.  I see that Automake has conditionals:

I am also inclined to see it as a bug.  Generally, most times GNU make
is needed are because someone used an extension without realizing that
there is make other than GNU make, vs it making a huge difference.  But
if it is hard to do things differently, that's somewhat tilting at
windwills.   But hey, that's what running scheme is all about!

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