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Automake test release 1.13.1b (will become 1.13.2)

From: Stefano Lattarini
Subject: Automake test release 1.13.1b (will become 1.13.2)
Date: Wed, 23 Jan 2013 11:42:23 +0100

This is the announcement for the GNU Automake 1.13.1b test release.

This is a bug-fixing release.  Its main purpose is to re-introduce
some obsolete m4 macros that had been removed too hastily, bringing
woes and problems for distro packagers; see:

It also offers some minor documentation fixes, and introduces new
runtime (non-fatal!) warnings for a couple of discouraged features
of Texinfo support: use of suffix-less info files, and use of
Texinfo input files with '.txi' or '.texinfo' extensions.

See below for the detailed list of changes since the previous
version, as summarized by the NEWS file.

Download here:

Release is tentatively planned in about a week; but it won't actually
take place until the distro packagers have confirmed the changes
introduced are good enough to fix the issues they've been seeing.

Please report bugs and problems to <address@hidden>,
and send general comments and feedback to <address@hidden>.

Thanks to everyone who has reported problems, contributed
patches, and helped testing Automake!


New in 1.13.2:

* WARNING: Future backward-incompatibilities!

  - Automake 1.14 will require Autoconf 2.70 or later (which is still
    unreleased at the moment of writing, but is planned to be released
    before Automake 1.14 is).

  - Automake 1.14 will drop support for the long-deprecated ''
    name for the Autoconf input file.  You are advised to start using
    recommended name '' instead, ASAP.

  - The ACLOCAL_AMFLAGS special make variable will be fully deprecated
    in Automake 1.14 (where it will raise warnings in the "obsolete"
    category).  You are advised to start relying on the new Automake
    support for AC_CONFIG_MACRO_DIRS instead (which was introduced in
    Automake 1.13).

  - Support for IRIX and the SGI C/C++ compilers will be removed in
    Automake 1.14: they have seen their last release in 2006, and SGI
    is expected to retire support from them in December 2013; see
    <> for
    more information.

  - Future versions of Automake might remove support for MS-DOS and
    Windows 95/98/ME (support for them was offered by relying on the
    DJGPP project).  Note however that both Cygwin and MSYS/MinGW on
    modern Windows versions will continue to be fully supported.

  - Support for the long-deprecated INCLUDES variable will be removed
    altogether in Automake 1.14.  The AM_CPPFLAGS variable should be
    used instead.

  - Automake-provided scripts and makefile recipes might (finally!)
    start assuming a POSIX shell in Automake 1.14.

  - Starting from Automake 1.14, third-party m4 files located in the
    system-wide aclocal directory, as well as in any directory listed
    in the ACLOCAL_PATH environment variable, will take precedence
    over "built-in" Automake macros.  For example (assuming Automake
    is installed in the /usr/local hierarchy), a definition of the
    AM_PROG_VALAC macro found in '/usr/local/share/aclocal/my-vala.m4'
    should take precedence over the same-named automake-provided macro
    (defined in '/usr/local/share/aclocal-1.14/vala.m4').

* Obsolescent features:

  - Use of suffix-less info files (that can be specified through the
    '@setfilename' macro in Texinfo input files) is discouraged, and
    its use will raise warnings in the 'obsolete' category.

  - Use of Texinfo input files with '.txi' or '.texinfo' extensions
    is discouraged, and its use will raise warnings in the 'obsolete'
    category.  You are advised to simply use the '.texi' extension

* Documentation fixes:

  - The long-deprecated but still supported two-arguments invocation form
    of AM_INIT_AUTOMAKE is documented once again.  This seems the sanest
    thing to do, given that support for such an usage might need to remain
    in place for a unspecified amount of time in order to cater for people
    who want to define the version number for their package dynamically at
    configure runtime (unfortunately, Autoconf does not yet support this
    scenario, so we cannot delegate the work to it).

  - The serial testsuite harness is no longer reported as "deprecated",
    but as "discouraged".  We have no plan to remove it, not to make its
    use cause runtime warnings.

  - The parallel testsuite is no longer reported as "experimental"; it
    is well tested, ans should be stable now.

  - The 'shar' and 'tarZ' distribution formats and the 'dist-shar' and
    'dist-tarZ' options are obsolescent, and their use is deprecated
    in the documentation.

  - Other minor miscellaneous fixes and improvements; in particular,
    some improvements in cross-references.

* Bugs fixed:

  - The obsolete macros AM_CONFIG_HEADER or AM_PROG_CC_STDC work once
    again, as they did in Automake 1.12.x (albeit printing runtime
    warnings in the 'obsolete' category).  Removing them has turned
    out to be a very bad idea, because it complicated distro packing
    enormously.  Making them issue fatal warnings, as we did in
    Automake 1.13, has turned out to be a similarly very bad idea,
    for exactly the same reason.

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