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Need help: strange pbuilder and tetex interaction

Hi folks,

I am having a problem I can't square, and Junichi gave a me a pointer that
makes it look as if it is not pbuilder either.

Background:  GNU gsl comes with a large reference manual which I ship as a
ps file in its own package. Historically, there were issues rebuilding it
having to do with chart and equation support in texinfo, if I recall. Bas
recently wishlisted a bug report with the almost sufficient patch to build
the pdf from the docs (with the idea that pdf gives us neither navigation in
the 400+ pages document, which is true).  Now, texi2dvi / texi2pdf dies with
an error on unsufficient pool size. We can overcome that both in the shell
and in 'normal' build outside of pbuilder with 'make pool_size=250000 pdf'.

But for some off reason, that never ever works in pbuilder, and which is
where I am stuck.  My debian/rules currently has (where the code is in the
configure so that it gets triggered earlier; no point compiling all of the
library first)

export pool_size=250000


configure: configure-stamp
       ./configure 	--prefix=/usr 		\
       			--enable-shared  	\
		    	--enable-static 	\
			--with-gnu-ld 		\
			--build $(arch)
        touch configure-stamp

	cd doc && \
      	    for i in *.eps; do \
	        echo Converting $$i to pdf...; \
		epstopdf $$i > /dev/null 2>&1; \
	    done && $(MAKE) pdf

Adding the env was Junichi's suggestion.  It shows that the env.var
pool_size is there at the make level. 

I tried various other methods like

  		&& pool_size=250000 $(MAKE) pdf
  		&& $(MAKE) pool_size=250000 pdf
  		&& (export pool_size=250000 && $(MAKE) pdf)

but somehow the pool_size setting never propagates.

What is the right way of doing this which does not cause a FTBFS? Am I
missing a make trick?  

Please CC me as I am not subscribed to debian-devel.

Thanks,  Dirk

partial build log:

touch configure-stamp
SUDO_COMMAND=/usr/sbin/pbuilder build --buildresult
/var/local/cache/pbuilder/result/ ../gsl_1.4-5.dsc
pool_size=250000                      <------------ here it is
LESSOPEN=| /usr/bin/lesspipe %s
cd doc && \
   for i in *.eps; do \
        echo Converting $i to pdf...; \
        epstopdf $i > /dev/null 2>&1; \
   done && (export pool_size=250000 && /usr/bin/make pdf)
Converting 12-cities.eps to pdf...
Converting cheb.eps to pdf...
Converting fft-complex-radix2-f.eps to pdf...
make: *** [configure-stamp] Error 2
pbuilder: Failed autobuilding of package
 -> Aborting with an error

The relationship between the computed price and reality is as yet unknown.  
                                             -- From the pac(8) manual page

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