[Gc] Re: Building on OS X: Autotools vs pkg-config issues

Bruce Mitchener bruce.mitchener at gmail.com
Thu Mar 1 21:46:38 PST 2012

On Fri, Mar 2, 2012 at 12:28 PM, Bruce Mitchener
<bruce.mitchener at gmail.com>wrote:

> Hello,
> It would be really nice if Boehm could build out of the box on Mac OS X
> without having to install updated autotools and pkg-config.  A quick check
> seems to show that it could work with the version of autotools shipped on
> OS X, with the exception of the usage of pkg-config.
> One fix would be to put a copy of pkg.m4 in bdwgc/m4/ next to the
> gc_set_version.m4 and distribute that yourself.  With that and changing the
> AC_PREREQ to use 2.61 for both the GC and libatomic_ops, things appear to
> work.  There's an argument to be made that shipping pkg.m4 here is bad, but
> the current situation also seems a bit bad.
> Another fix might be to not use pkg-config or to support some way of not
> using it, but that seems like more work.
> Is there another way that we could get this to where it works out of the
> box on a roughly out of the box XCode installation?

An alternative here would be to just do a classic autoconf check against
--with-libatomic-ops=/path/to/installation/prefix and touch up CFLAGS /
LIBS accordingly. That'd remove the dependency on PKG_CHECK_MODULES and add
maybe 20 lines of autoconf hackery.  (Other people / libraries can still
use pkg-config to find Boehm / libatomic_ops, just that the Boehm
configuration process wouldn't use it.)

 - Bruce

> The background for this is that in Open Dylan (https://opendylan.org/), we
> have various build / packaging issues where we'd rather just pull in Boehm
> via a git submodule and do our own build as part of our build system to
> make sure that everything is correctly configured and then link to the
> static library.  But we don't require newer autotools or pkg-config, so
> this is a bit of an issue for us in terms of developer usability.
> Thoughts?
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