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Re: 3.81 and windows paths

From: Paul D. Smith
Subject: Re: 3.81 and windows paths
Date: Thu, 27 Jul 2006 17:09:16 -0400

%% Brian Dessent <address@hidden> writes:

  bd> To summarize, the Cygwin version of make prior to 3.81 contained
  bd> local patches to support both posix and Windows paths.  The Cygwin
  bd> maintainer got tired of continuously maintaining these local
  bd> patches and so when packaging 3.81 the vanilla sources were used.
  bd> This means that only posix paths work.

Thanks Brian; I had no idea about this decision on the part of the
Cygwin maintainers (and the minor brouhaha it apparently generated :-)).

Now that I know about this I have a much better understanding of what's
going on: I couldn't figure out how upgrading from 3.80 to 3.81 was
causing these problems--unfortunately most people neglect to mention
they're using Cygwin until asked specifically (heck many don't even
mention they're using Windows!! :-/)

  bd> However, completely separate from Cygwin is the native (mingw)
  bd> build of make which has always supported Windows paths and always
  bd> will.  So it's completely wrong to say that make doesn't support
  bd> Windows paths.  You should use this version if you need to support
  bd> such paths.

I agree with this: you can build GNU make in 2 or 3 different ways, all
of which natively support DOS-style pathnames and have always done
since DOS/Windows support was first added back in GNU make 3.76 or so.

I believe that this support is limited to handling drive letters without
choking on the ":", actually: IIRC the native support still requires
forward slashes (/) rather than backslashes (\).  I could be wrong
though.  I'm not sure how Cygwin's pathname management patches worked.

In fact, I'm wondering if there is an advantage to building GNU make
using the Cygwin environment, vs. using a native MingW (for example)
build of GNU make?  I'm afraid I'm woefully ignorant about the details.

 Paul D. Smith <address@hidden>          Find some GNU make tips at:
 http://www.gnu.org                      http://make.paulandlesley.org
 "Please remain calm...I may be mad, but I am a professional." --Mad Scientist

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