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Re: automake 1.16.4 and new PYTHON_PREFIX

From: Joshua Root
Subject: Re: automake 1.16.4 and new PYTHON_PREFIX
Date: Wed, 25 Aug 2021 15:08:33 +1000
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Macintosh; Intel Mac OS X 10.15; rv:78.0) Gecko/20100101 Thunderbird/78.13.0

On 2021-8-25 10:14 , Karl Berry wrote:
Ok, I guess we'll have to revert the Python change and make another
release. I was worried about the change. But I am not sure of how best
to deal with the intended benefits.

Joshua, can you please take a look at these reports and advise?

I guess the fundamental question is: Why are we asking python where it wants modules installed? If it's so we can install modules in a place where python will find them, it makes sense that $PYTHON_PREFIX may be distinct from $prefix. If it's so that we can install modules in a consistent subdir relative to the prefix, then we run into the problem that what python gives you is not always relative to the prefix (and isn't necessarily consistent). It seems like using a fixed subdir would solve that problem better than asking python.

If reliance on the previous behaviour is widespread enough that the change is unacceptable, some alternatives might be to have different behaviour depending on whether the discovered python is in the configured prefix or not, or depending on whether or not python is a framework build. The downside is more special cases and more potential for confusion.

Whatever else you decide to do, please keep the --with-python_prefix option. Having that makes it at least possible to install in the right place for framework builds, even if the defaults go back to being incorrect for that case.

- Josh

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