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libtool and AIX

From: Dan Stromberg
Subject: libtool and AIX
Date: Thu, 23 Jun 2005 14:38:33 -0700
User-agent: Pan/0.14.2 (This is not a psychotic episode. It's a cleansing moment of clarity.)

Hi folks.

First off, thanks for the great, freely redistributable tool.

Anyway, I'm writing about the possibility of getting libtool working
better on AIX.

The primary reason AIX is an exception to the general rules, is that it
appears that when you compile an AIX binary defining a library path for
the executable at runtime, the first file/directory listed in that path
has a special meaning - sometimes.

More specifically, if that first directory component really is a
directory, then it'll be searched as one would expect on just about any
other *ix.

However, if that first directory component in the : separated list isn't a
directory, then it's interpreted as a "loader domain", which is more or
less a namespace for libraries.

Why does AIX need library namespaces?  Because AIX's default behavior is
to load one version, and one version only, of a given library.  Yes, if
you want libfoo-2.0 and libfoo-1.0 loaded into core concurrently, then
tuff nuggies, you only get the first one that was loaded, unless:

1) You slibclean away the library
2) You put one or both of those programs into non-default loader domains

So to recap, AIX really wants to place a special interpretation on the
first directory in a runtime library load path, sometimes.

It appears that libtool, however, sometimes likes to insert directory
paths ahead of the directory paths that are specified by the programmer

So if libtool could have some sort of way of specifying something like one
fo the following, that might really help matters on AIX:

1) Preserve library search path, taking new dirs on the end
2) Optionally specify a special path that will Always end up first in the
library search path
3) Have a general way of specifying what must go ahead of what

Any thoughts on how to go about this?


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