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GNU Automake 1.16 released
GNU Automake 1.16 released
Sun, 25 Feb 2018 23:00:14 +0100
Gnus/5.13 (Gnus v5.13) Emacs/25.3 (gnu/linux)
We are pleased to announce the GNU Automake 1.16 minor release.
This release follows 1.15.1 which was made 8 months ago.
See below for the detailed list of changes since the
previous version, as summarized by the NEWS file.
Please report bugs and problems to <address@hidden>,
and send general comments and feedback to <address@hidden>.
Thanks to everyone who has reported problems, contributed
patches, and helped testing Automake!
* WARNING: Future backward-incompatibilities!
- Makefile recipes generated by Automake 2.0 will expect to use an
'rm' program that doesn't complain when called without any non-option
argument if the '-f' option is given (so that commands like "rm -f"
and "rm -rf" will act as a no-op, instead of raising usage errors).
This behavior of 'rm' is very widespread in the wild, and it will be
required in the next POSIX version:
Accordingly, AM_INIT_AUTOMAKE now expands some shell code that checks
that the default 'rm' program in PATH satisfies this requirement,
aborting the configure process if this is not the case. For the
moment, it's still possible to force the configuration process to
succeed even with a broken 'rm', that that will no longer be the case
for Automake 2.0.
- Automake 2.0 will require Autoconf 2.70 or later (which is still
unreleased at the moment of writing, but is planned to be released
before Automake 2.0 is).
- Automake 2.0 will drop support for the long-deprecated 'configure.in'
name for the Autoconf input file. You are advised to start using the
recommended name 'configure.ac' instead, ASAP.
- The ACLOCAL_AMFLAGS special make variable will be fully deprecated in
Automake 2.0: it will raise warnings in the "obsolete" category (but
still no hard error of course, for compatibilities with the many, many
packages that still relies on that variable). You are advised to
start relying on the new Automake support for AC_CONFIG_MACRO_DIRS
instead (which was introduced in Automake 1.13).
- Automake 2.0 will remove support for automatic dependency tracking
with the SGI C/C++ compilers on IRIX. The SGI depmode has been
reported broken "in the wild" already, and we don't think investing
time in debugging and fixing is worthwhile, especially considering
that SGI has last updated those compilers in 2006, and retired
support for them in December 2013:
- Automake 2.0 will remove support for MS-DOS and Windows 95/98/ME
(support for them was offered by relying on the DJGPP project).
Note however that both Cygwin and MSYS/MinGW on modern Windows
versions will continue to be fully supported.
- Automake-provided scripts and makefile recipes might (finally!)
start assuming a POSIX shell in Automake 2.0. There still is no
certainty about this though: we'd first like to wait and see
whether future Autoconf versions will be enhanced to guarantee
that such a shell is always found and provided by the checks in
- Starting from Automake 2.0, third-party m4 files located in the
system-wide aclocal directory, as well as in any directory listed
in the ACLOCAL_PATH environment variable, will take precedence
over "built-in" Automake macros. For example (assuming Automake
is installed in the /usr/local hierarchy), a definition of the
AM_PROG_VALAC macro found in '/usr/local/share/aclocal/my-vala.m4'
should take precedence over the same-named automake-provided macro
(defined in '/usr/local/share/aclocal-2.0/vala.m4').
New in 1.16:
* Miscellaneous changes
- When subdir-objects is in effect, Automake will now construct
shorter object file names when no programs and libraries name
clashes are encountered. This should make the discouraged use of
'foo_SHORTNAME' unnecessary in many cases.
* Bugs fixed:
- Automatic dependency tracking has been fixed to work also when the
'subdir-object' option is used and some 'foo_SOURCES' definition
contains unexpanded references to make variables, as in, e.g.:
a_src = sources/libs/aaa
b_src = sources/bbb
foo_SOURCES = $(a_src)/bar.c $(b_src)/baz.c
With such a setup, the created makefile fragment containing dependency
tracking information will be correctly placed under the directories
named 'sources/libs/aaa/.deps' and 'sources/bbb/.deps', rather than
mistakenly under directories named (literally!) '$(src_a)/.deps' and
'$(src_b)/.deps' (this was the first part of automake bug#13928).
Notice that in order to fix this bug we had to slightly change the
semantics of how config.status bootstraps the makefile fragments
required for the dependency tracking to work: rather than attempting
to parse the Makefiles via grep and sed trickeries only, we actually
invoke 'make' on a slightly preprocessed version of those Makefiles,
using a private target that is only meant to bootstrap the required
- The 'subdir-object' option no longer causes object files corresponding
to source files specified with an explicit '$(srcdir)' component to be
placed in the source tree rather than in the build tree.
For example, if Makefile.am contains:
AUTOMAKE_OPTIONS = subdir-objects
foo_SOURCES = $(srcdir)/foo.c $(srcdir)/s/bar.c $(top_srcdir)/baz.c
then "make all" will create 'foo.o' and 's/bar.o' in $(builddir) rather
than in $(srcdir), and will create 'baz.o' in $(top_builddir) rather
than in $(top_srcdir).
This was the second part of automake bug#13928.
- Installed 'aclocal' m4 macros can now accept installation directories
containing '@' characters (automake bug#20903)
- "./configure && make dist" no longer fails when a distributed file depends
on one from BUILT_SOURCES.
- When combining AC_LIBOBJ or AC_FUNC_ALLOCA with the
"--disable-dependency-tracking" configure option in an out of source
build, the build sub-directory defined by AC_CONFIG_LIBOBJ_DIR is now
properly created. (automake bug#27781)
- The time printed by 'mdate-sh' is now using the UTC time zone to support
the reproducible build effort. (automake bug#20314)
- The elisp byte-compilation rule now uses byte-compile-dest-file-function,
rather than byte-compile-dest-file, which was obsoleted in 2009. We expect
that Emacs-26 will continue to support the old function, but will complain
loudly, and that Emacs-27 will remove support for it altogether.
* New features added
- A custom testsuite driver for the Guile Scheme SRFI-64 API has been added
to the "contrib" section. This allows a more convenient way to test Guile
code without having to use low primitives such as exit status. See
SRFI-64 API specification for more details:
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