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Re: [libvirt] [virt-tools-list] [PATCH] add AM_MAINTAINER_MODE macro

[adding libvir-list]

On 10/15/2010 06:06 AM, Eric Blake wrote:
On 10/15/2010 05:29 AM, Guido Günther wrote:
On Wed, Sep 29, 2010 at 04:46:23PM +0200, Guido Günther wrote:

Odd - I cannot find the original mail, even when looking in the archives:

Oh, I see why - I was looking on the wrong list. Libvirt patches should generally be sent to libvir-list.

Please add the AM_MAINTAINER_MODE macro to configure.ac for
virt-manager. This allows downstream distributions to disable this
feature so no autotools are required to build the package. The patch
doesn't change behaviour for upstream:


The automake manual recommends against maintainer mode:

Several years ago François Pinard pointed out several arguments
against this AM_MAINTAINER_MODE macro. Most of them relate to
insecurity. By removing dependencies you get non-dependable builds:
changes to sources files can have no effect on generated files and
this can be very confusing when unnoticed. He adds that security
shouldn't be reserved to maintainers (what --enable-maintainer-mode
suggests), on the contrary. If one user has to modify a Makefile.am,
then either Makefile.in should be updated or a warning should be
output (this is what Automake uses missing for) but the last thing you
want is that nothing happens and the user doesn't notice it (this is
what happens when rebuild rules are disabled by AM_MAINTAINER_MODE).

Jim Meyering, the inventor of the AM_MAINTAINER_MODE macro was swayed
by François's arguments, and got rid of AM_MAINTAINER_MODE in all of
his packages.

Furthermore, downstream distributions should not require autotools to
build a package if they do not make any changes to any of the
configure.ac/Makefile.am source files in the first place; and
conversely, if you ARE patching those files, then you WANT to rerun the
autotools and not silently disable them.


Any chance this gets applied?

I'm very reluctant to make this change without a better demonstration
why you think it is needed, and only after exhausting other attempts to
fix the root cause problem that you are really hitting.

Eric Blake   eblake redhat com    +1-801-349-2682
Libvirt virtualization library http://libvirt.org

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