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Re: A debian/rules target to rebuild pre-built stuff?

On Tue, 25 Oct 2011, Bernhard R. Link wrote:
> > As a rule, you are supposed to get rid of all autogenerated files and
> > rebuild them from scratch when packaging for Debian.  AM_MAINTAINER_MODE
> > changes nothing in that case, as you will readly notice any upstream
> > breakage when you try to build the package after importing a new upstream
> > release.
> As another rule, you are not supposed to derivate much from upstream
> without a reason. Using build scripts generated with a different version
> is such a derivation.

We will have to agree to disagree, there.  The build system is not the end
product, and in fact one often has to fix or enhance the thing to adequate
the build to either Debian's or the package's requirements.

Besides, the chances of upstream using exactly the same arch toolchain (gcc,
binutils...) as you do are small, and that fact alone will seldom either fix
or introduce bugs in the resulting binary when compared to the prebuilt
stuff from upstream.

Obviously, any non-Debian-specific fixes and enhancements to the build
system should be sent upstream.

> Libtool is quite a beast, much different to autoconf and automake.

Issues with autoconf and automake macros do happen, and get fixed.  And bit
rot is a real concern for autoconf/automake rules (and therefore for the
resuling build scripts/makefiles).

> When using libtool I guess it makes sense to retool it, but I think
> without libtool it depends how much changes you want to do to the
> build system.

No, it actually depends entirely on what upstream used to do the tooling on
that particular upstream release, and you will have to keep an eye on that
if you don't retool.

  "One disk to rule them all, One disk to find them. One disk to bring
  them all and in the darkness grind them. In the Land of Redmond
  where the shadows lie." -- The Silicon Valley Tarot
  Henrique Holschuh

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