[Mailman-Developers] Small contrib script - Autoconf

Lindsay Haisley fmouse at fmp.com
Tue Jan 9 23:36:56 EST 2018

On Wed, 2018-01-10 at 12:13 +0900, Stephen J. Turnbull wrote:
> Lindsay Haisley writes:
>  > > The bottom line is this is something that newer autoconf does and
>  > > if your autoconf does it, I don't know a way to turn it off.
>  > 
>  > I looked at the code and that's kinda what I figured. Thanks
> All of the autotools stuff is deeply entwined.  I suspect we only use
> autoconf, so surgery on the configure.in to only call the stuff we use
> is probably OK.  But if we use anything like automake, it's likely
> there will be ripple effects if you remove GNU standard setup as Make
> variables that are defined by the standard and used in the Makefile go
> undefined.
> It's probably not worth doing more.

Frankly, my main issue is my timidity, and not wanting to make any
changes not directly related to my proposed mailman-config script. If I
ran autoconf in the source root without changing configure.in I wanted
the resulting configure script to be byte for byte the same as the one
distributed with every version of MM2 since dirt was new (or at least
several version back). It wasn't. On the other hand, the only
difference was code supporting a (relatively) new config
variable, runstatedir, which allows flexible assignment of the location
of temporary runtime process information such as the PID file and such.
When this was introduced, there was a transition underway, maybe with
the FSF standard too, moving files from /var/run to /run in some
distributions. There's a FSF announcement about it at 

MM2 doesn't appear to use anything in /run or /var/run, so runstatedir
is kind of moot, and looking at the supporting macros I didn't see any
code which allowed reference to it to be removed without hacking a
macro file, which didn't seem appropriate.

I had to make changes to configure.in, and I've generated the configure
file with the autoconf I have here - v2.69. Going forward setting 
--runstatedir will be a configure option. As far as I can see, it's
harmless, so I'll let it be and move on. If it needs attention down the
road it can be dealt with then. If reference to runstatedir is
surgically removed from the configure script here it becomes
"politically correct" and byte for byte identical in all other respects
to the old version of it.


Lindsay Haisley       | "Dissent is what rescues democracy
FMP Computer Services |   from a quiet death behind 
512-259-1190          |     closed doors" 
http://www.fmp.com    |       - Molly Ivins

More information about the Mailman-Developers mailing list