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Re: 01-as-require-shell-fn.patch

From: Peter Eisentraut
Subject: Re: 01-as-require-shell-fn.patch
Date: Mon, 24 Nov 2003 21:04:05 +0100 (CET)

Akim Demaille writes:

> If everybody agrees we can use shell functions, then let's proceed.
> This is quite an audacious change.  Given the popularity of changes in
> Autoconf, I quite fear it...

I think the reason that many changes in Autoconf are "unpopular" is that
many people are not deeply familiar with build system issues and its
corner cases, so in many cases the reasons for the changes are simply not
understood.  But if you tell people that using shell functions will make
configure smaller and faster, I'm sure everyone will understand.

> My plan was:
> 1. - Autotest use shell function
>    - we embed a spy test in all configure for at least one release
>      that tries to find a shell supporting shell functions
> 2. we use shell functions in Autoconf

Releasing one round of Autoconf with just a test for shell functions is
reasonable, but I doubt how far that test would spread and how long you
would have to wait for reliable results.  In all the years that shell
functions have been discussed, no one has ever pointed out anything
besides Ultrix, and by waiting this long I think we've successfully
outlived Ultrix.

Peter Eisentraut   address@hidden

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