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Re: Best practice for cleaning autotools-generated files?

* Vincent Danjean <vdanjean.ml@free.fr> [110316 15:48]:
> Then, you need a way to patch them. There is lots of software where
> you need to patch configure.ac and/or Makefile.am

Having to patch something and having to patch nothing are two very
different cases.

It usually also make sense to think twice before patching build systems.
Especially automake is very good in allowing many things changed without
having to patch something. (There are some cases where patches are
necessary, but there are also enough cases where patching can be easily

> If you do it with the patch system (quilt or even plain dpkg),
> before building the package source, you cannot ensure that files are
> patched in the right order.

It usually makes sense to have that as different patches anyway, so
the order is fixed. The only problem is systems with too small
resolution of times so one needs the usual
touch prereqs ; sleep 2 ; touch rest

But I agree that given how stable autotools' interface got the recent
years, if patching is necessary rerunning autotools is usually better.
(Though it is of course a bad sign of either upstream having buggy
files, upstream having files too buggy to allow changing the behaviour
without patching or the Debian patch having unnecessary intrusive
patches. But the world is sometimes bad, so bad signs must not be bad).

	Bernhard R. Link

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