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Re: disparity in Paul’s Rules

From: Paul Smith
Subject: Re: disparity in Paul’s Rules
Date: Thu, 19 Feb 2015 07:34:31 -0500

On Wed, 2015-02-18 at 17:01 -0800, David Boyce wrote:
> "Every non-continued line that starts with a TAB is part of a command
> script–and vice versa.”
> But it’s not really as simple as that.

It's never been that simple.  But trying to explain the real rules make
uses is hard, and taking advantage of this "feature" is error-prone to
say the least, so I tried to _make_ it simple, by convention :-p :-).

As Eli points out, there are tons of older makefiles out there, many
originally produced by "makefile generation" tools like imake (ugh!),
which may start variable assignment lines with TAB characters.

I believe that this behavior of GNU make is required by POSIX, and not a
bug: POSIX states that TAB characters are only significant when they
appear in the context of defining a target rule.

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