[TUHS] Tools and building: libtool, autoconf, etc. [ trying to have a relevant subject line ]

Ron Natalie ron at ronnatalie.com
Fri Sep 15 06:32:41 AEST 2017

Autoconf didn't originate with Gnu.   It was around longer than that
(someone can probably remember, but I remember some of the netnews software
using it long before RMS or LINUX got going).
I always havd a lot of distatste for it.     I worked on portable software
as well, everything form Unipress EMACS to BRL CAD to my own software
products (we ran on, let me see if I can recall:   SUN both Solaris and the
old SunOS4, Stellar, Ardent, HP (both architectures), Apollo, SGI (various
levels), DEC MIPS, DEC ALPHA, RS6000, iTanium, i8t0 (several flavors), the
80x86 in many flavors, Intergraph 32032, Intergraph Clipper...

We were always able to disttill the portability information into a single
set of include files, one conf.h and one included for each platform.    Most
of the grief came from people with various ideas on how to do 64 bit seeks
and of all things (thankfully we got away from this) stty/ioctl.

I never had to resort to a script to set things up.   Reading down through
conf.h told me what my options were and it didn't take long to set things

I also ported/wrote X11 servers for four or five systems (including writing
my own CFB24 before MIT released theres).    iMake worked pretty well,
though since it relied on the C prepropcessor and the exacxt format of the C
preprocessor output really isn't defined for white space, it sometimes was a
problem.    Eventually, we picked up CMAKE though I don't particularly like
that one either.

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