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svn copy conflicts with autotools ?

From: Eric PAIRE
Subject: svn copy conflicts with autotools ?
Date: Wed, 01 Dec 2004 12:38:07 +0100
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; U; SunOS sun4u; en-US; rv:1.0.1) Gecko/20020920 Netscape/7.0

Hi all,

Here is the description of a problem met with subversion and autotools.
If anybody has a clean solution, let me/us know:

1) I have a project using the autotools for the environment management.
2) The project compiles without any problem in the 'trunk' directory.
3) I have set up a tag with 'svn copy' so that the tagged version is the exact
   copy of the version in the 'trunk' directory.
4) Another user gets the tagged version with a 'svn co' and runs 'configure'
   on it. And now ...

The problem is that all the dates of the checked out files have been modified, and when running 'make', the first thing run is 'autoconf' and 'automake', thus modifying source directory files (configure, ...). It was even worst in our case, as the autotools installed on the machine were too old and 'make' stopped without having built anything :-( :-( The result is that checking out a tagged version may lead to an unusable source tree (at least a tree needing some source file modifications).

This is the reason why I don't think it is a good thing that the subversion philosophy of timestamps conflicts with autotools one. I am looking for a solution that would allow a checkout to avoid rebuilding source files when not necessary. Timestamps need to be preserved somewhat, and I think that the way subversion manages currently timestamps should be coherent with autotools (or autotools should be modified to
handle subversion philosophy), and in particular when doing a 'svn copy'.

Thanks for your comments (and your solutions),

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