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Re: config.sub/config.guess using nonportable $(...) substitutions

From: Bob Friesenhahn
Subject: Re: config.sub/config.guess using nonportable $(...) substitutions
Date: Tue, 9 Mar 2021 07:57:38 -0600 (CST)
User-agent: Alpine 2.20 (GSO 67 2015-01-07)

On Mon, 8 Mar 2021, Paul Eggert wrote:

Except maybe for Solaris 10, shells that don't grok $(...) are museum pieces now. And anybody on Solaris 10 (which occasionally includes me, as my department still uses Solaris 10 on some machines) can easily run a better shell like /bin/ksh. It's a bit of a maintenance hassle for Ben to deal with

The script itself does start with requesting /bin/sh. The config.guess script is also used in contexts outside of Autotools, although such usage can likely specify the shell to use when executing the script.

At some point, failing to support $(...) is in the same ballpark as failing to support "#". I can see Ben's point of view that we've reached that point even if I would have waited another three years, so if Ben would rather use $(...) I'd rather not overrule him downstream.

It seems that config.guess and Autotools packages are picking winners and losers. It is not clear where the bar has been set. When such decisions are made, it is useful if messaging about it is very clear.

If any component of a build infrastructure is not portable to an older system, then all of the components (including each dependent application's own script) might as well be updated to use the less-portable yet more convenient modern syntax and this implies the ability to safely use other modern syntax as well.

Bob Friesenhahn,
GraphicsMagick Maintainer,
Public Key,

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