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Re: use of libtool for linking executables - rpath problem

From: Bob Friesenhahn
Subject: Re: use of libtool for linking executables - rpath problem
Date: Mon, 19 Nov 2001 19:45:00 -0600 (CST)

On Mon, 19 Nov 2001, Paul Davis wrote:

> >What is needed is a "database" which acts as a registry of installed
> >packages.  This would be updatable by 'make install' as well as binary
> >packaging tools.  
> all of GNOME is now using pkg-config for this purpose.
> >                A tool would be provided to formulate the optimum
> >-I, -L, and -llibs options required to build using a set of libraries.
> pkg-config doesn't do that. its an almost impossible task unless you

Are you talking about some new tool that I had not previously heard
about or are you talking about a script like the
'/usr/local/bin/gnome-config' I see on my system?  If the latter, then
that is the type of trivial *-config script that I described as being
totally useless to configure a large package that needs to use options
from several (or many!) of these scripts.

If this works for gnome; a tightly controlled environment; then that's
great.  It doesn't work in the general case though.  In the general
case there is no feedback loop to resolve problems as there is in a
project like gnome.

Unfortunately gtk standardized this type of script through
proliferation. The proliferation occured because no other option was
offered. It's mere popularity does not make it the right solution.

The scripts options do not even align with Autoconf since Autoconf
distinguishes options with finer granularity than the *-config scripts

  *-config      Autoconf
  ==========    =================
  --libs        LDFLAGS + LIBS
  --cflags      CPPFLAGS + CFLAGS

The munging of LDFLAGS and LIBS to create the output from the --libs
option creates a bloody mess when you try to blend these options
together.  Linker directory search order and library link order are
totally lost if a simple concatenation of options is used.

The only proper solution is one based on a rules database in which the
dependency requirements for each package can be expressed so that the
dependencies can be reliabily satisified by the build environment.

Libtools .la files do not provide this database. Pkg-config scripts do
not provide this database.

Bob Friesenhahn

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