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Populating empty target file to be tracked in Git

From: Matt Darfeuille
Subject: Populating empty target file to be tracked in Git
Date: Thu, 12 Mar 2020 20:43:35 +0100
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 6.1; Win64; x64; rv:68.0) Gecko/20100101 Thunderbird/68.5.0


From (1):

"but the file’s contents do not matter, and usually are empty."

I need to populate that "empty target" file with a release version given to the Makefile as variable to be used by Git.
What is the best way to populate an "empty target" file?

If my understanding is correct, the '--touch' option will be of no use as it will "touch" the "empty target" file and it will never be populated. How can I make the '--touch' option to the Make utility populate a "empty target" file?

$ make -v
GNU Make 4.1
Built for x86_64-pc-linux-gnu

Any help is appriciated.

1)  https://www.gnu.org/software/make/manual/html_node/Empty-Targets.html

Matt Darfeuille
Shorewall Project Committee, one of four core members

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