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Re: Parallelization of shell scripts for 'configure' etc.

From: Jeffrey Walton
Subject: Re: Parallelization of shell scripts for 'configure' etc.
Date: Tue, 14 Jun 2022 23:36:24 -0400

On Tue, Jun 14, 2022 at 11:15 PM Ángel <angel@16bits.net> wrote:
> On 2022-06-13 at 18:32 -0700, Paul Eggert wrote:
> > Yes, all that could be done in theory, but it'd take a lot of
> > hacking and it's been decades and it hasn't happened.
> >
> > I'd rather have shell scripts "just work" in parallel with a minimum
> > of fuss.
> If this hasn't happened, that might be because nobody found it
> important enough to dive into such task, relatively to the effort
> required (or estimated).
> Everyone wishes their configure scripts to finish quickly but, first
> and foremost, the result must be right. Something which is easier with
> serial script than with a parallel implementation.
> And in the case of configure, they are a mix of boilerplate code, m4
> and shell scripting, so not many people would be, in addition to
> motivated by that task, proficient enough in all of those. Furthermore,
> configure typically target really classic dialects, which makes even
> more difficult to use modern features which could speed up the script.
> Optimizing that at bash would likely be even more complex, since it
> could only automatically optimize the cases that would never have side
> effects.
> I think that most gainings should probably come from autoconf blocks
> with optimizations. Still, it might be possible through some loadable
> builtin to improve the configure times.
> Do you have any handy example of configure that takes too long to run?

Try Emacs.


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