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Re: Constantly changing libtool

From: Bob Friesenhahn
Subject: Re: Constantly changing libtool
Date: Wed, 14 Apr 2021 15:35:58 -0500 (CDT)
User-agent: Alpine 2.20 (GSO 67 2015-01-07)

On Wed, 14 Apr 2021, Laurence Marks wrote:

I have some software which has been "fine" for about 15 years, with one
exception: every 6-12 months or so when I (or students/others) compile it
we run into version problems. The typical ones are version mismatch between
libtool and/or aclocal (called from libtool). While I can futze around with
libtoolize/aclocal/autoconf/automake etc until it works, this is not viable
for users who barely understand linux.

Is there some way in ( to setup so the relevant
version fixes can be done automatically? There are so many posts about
version mismatches that this should be there. Maybe it is and I just missed

Most problems seem to stem from packages providing the generated files from Autoconf, Automake, and libtool so that end users don't need to have the tools available. This would be combined with file time-stamp issues. Many source control systems do not preserve file time-stamps.

If the operating system distribution (or some other source) provides versions which differ from what the package provided, then there will be a problem.

One thing that can help quite a lot is to include AM_MAINTAINER_MODE in so that the user needs to add the --enable-maintainer-mode option in order to enable self-maintenance rules. If the user does not provide the option, then the existing files will be used, which is usually just fine unless a file has actually been modified.

It is sometimes said that 'autoreconf --force' will solve all problems, but in my experience this is not always true.

Bob Friesenhahn,
GraphicsMagick Maintainer,
Public Key,

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