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Re: GNU autogen code generation

From: NightStrike
Subject: Re: GNU autogen code generation
Date: Tue, 27 Apr 2010 18:49:56 -0400

On Tue, Apr 27, 2010 at 4:20 PM, Matěj Týč <address@hidden> wrote:
> Hello,
> I use GNU Autogen to generate files to my project.
> A little introduction:
> Autogen uses two files: A definition file, let's say foo.def and a
> template file, may be foo-template.tpl
> If I pass the definition file to autogen, it should use the information
> in it to find the template file and to produce the result by performing
> expansions in the template file.
> The extension of the result is defined in the template file and it can
> be whatever, either one file, or more files that differ in extensions
> (like a C source file and a header).
> What I would like to have is some integration of autogen with autoconf
> like YACC and LEX have.
> Which means that I would like to specify the template and definitions
> file in _SOURCES variable and Automake could take care of the rest:
>        - Generating intermediate sources
>        - Compiling those sources
>        - Distributing both autogen sources (= templates and definitions) and
> intermediate sources so even users who don't have autogen installed can
> compile the source.
> So i have some questions:
>        - Wouldn't it be worth to have an AM_PROG_AUTOGEN macro since autogen
> is GNU software?
>        - If not, is there a way how to easily achieve similar functionality
> using current automake capabilities?
> For example if I know that every file foo.def and foo.tpl pair results
> in foo.c, maybe I could have the following rule in
> .def.c: $(basename $<).tpl
>        $(autogen) autogen -o $@ $<
> (just a guess)
> But how to settle the distribution problem? I would probably need to put
> foo1.c foo2.c to something_SOURCES
> and
> foo1.tpl foo1.def ... ... to EXTRA_DIST
> but one would like to have those tpls and defs in SOURCES and the rest
> generated automatically, like for YACC and LEX.
> What do you think?

Someone will probably correct me, but you could try putting those
sources that you are building into BUILT_SOURCES.

> As a side note, I was thinking about generating code using m4 and some
> macro package, and since it is not so uncommon to generate code, I would
> like to ask what is the good approach to this since the automake manual
> doesn't tell very much about this...
> Regards,
> Matej

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