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Build directory option for configure script

From: Daniel J Sebald
Subject: Build directory option for configure script
Date: Sun, 12 Aug 2012 21:12:42 -0500
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; U; Linux x86_64; en-US; rv: Gecko/20111108 Fedora/3.1.16-1.fc14 Thunderbird/3.1.16

Hello Autoconf,

The Octave maintainers had a discussion about adding an option to "configure" for a build directory. The reason is that a lot of people like running configure from a directory other than the source tree so that 1) object files end up in a different directory that can easily be recursively removed to start over, and 2) multiple configurations and builds can be done (the analogy being a debug and non-debug menu selection in some C/C++ developer suite).

It was suggested this might be a generic feature rather than an Octave-added option. So please give me your thoughts on adding this option to Autoconf. By having this as an option, it lets people know that a separate build directory can be done, and it might be useful down the road to someone who wants to build a generic script. Patterning after this:

Fine tuning of the installation directories:
  --bindir=DIR            user executables [EPREFIX/bin]
  --sbindir=DIR           system admin executables [EPREFIX/sbin]

it might be something like:

--builddir=DIR           object and libraries

which is essentially the same as doing:

mkdir ../DIR
cd ../DIR
../<projname>/configure OTHER_OPTS
cd ../<projname>

Or something like that.



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