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Re: Autogenerated header files not included in .gitignore

From: Bruno Haible
Subject: Re: Autogenerated header files not included in .gitignore
Date: Sat, 03 Apr 2021 01:00:57 +0200
User-agent: KMail/5.1.3 (Linux/4.4.0-206-generic; KDE/5.18.0; x86_64; ; )

Hi Marc, all,

> A number of autogenerated header files are not added to ".gitignore" in
> "$source_base".
> For example, in a current project of mine,
> $ git status
> shows
> lib/alloca.h
> lib/fcntl.h
> lib/inttypes.h
> lib/langinfo.h
> lib/limits.h
> lib/locale.h
> lib/signal.h
> lib/stdio.h
> lib/stdlib.h
> lib/string.h
> lib/sys/
> lib/time.h
> lib/unistd.h
> lib/wchar.h
> lib/wctype.h
> Currently, Gnulib only adds "in"-files like "alloca.h.in" to ".gitignore".

As far as I know, there are two practices regarding .gitignore management:

  * Some developers want a very clean source directory at all times.
    They always to VPATH builds. They want to have in .gitignore the
    files brought in by Automake and Gnulib, but not the built files
    (*.o, alloca.h ... wctype.h, $(BUILT_SOURCES), etc.)

  * Some developers don't want to think much when building a package.
    They often build in the source dir. They want to have in .gitignore
    also the built files (*.o, alloca.h ... wctype.h, $(BUILT_SOURCES), etc.),
    even the log files left my "make check".

Gnulib, so far, is tailored for the first practice. How, would you say,
should we handle these two (incompatible) expectations?

  - A gnulib-tool option --vc-files=... (two possible options)?
  - Let gnulib-tool guess which of the two possible options is desired,
    based on the existing contents of the .gitignore files?
  - Other ideas?


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