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Getting working version?

From: John W. Eaton
Subject: Getting working version?
Date: Sat, 28 Dec 2002 19:08:16 -0600

On 28-Dec-2002, James Frye <address@hidden> wrote:

| Well, I'm still having problems trying to compile the source from
|  The latest is "parse error before '__ctype_b' in
| at lines 1996 and 2000.  It seems to be a consequence of the syntax 
| "! ::isalnum ()".  At least, if I change it to "!isalnum ()", the compile
| continues past that point, it compiles a lot more stuff, but eventually
| chokes in what I think is the link.  It produces the longest error message
| I remember ever seeing - seems to be saying something about an undefined
| reference to _Rb_tree in stl_tree.h at line 582.

I doubt that this is really due to a bug in Octave (the current
sources compile cleanly for me with gcc 3.2 on a current Debian

What compiler are you trying to use?  For the CVS version, I think I
already told you that you will probably need gcc 3.2.  If your
compiler doesn't understand ::isalnum, then I'd guess it is not
good enough to compile the current Octave sources.  But gcc 3.2 should
work and it is freely available, so you should probably upgrade if you
want to build Octave.

And anyway, it is a CVS archive, not a released version or even a
snapshot.  FWIW, there should be a new one of those soon, and if you
use Debian, you will probably be able to get a binary package for it
within a day or so after the sources appear on the Octave ftp site,
thanks to Dirk's efforts.

| It's getting to the point where I seem to just be wasting my time trying
| to compile something that appears to have been written as an exercise in
| using arcane language features that are supported by only a handful of
| compilers.

Are you referring to Octave sources, or something else?  I don't think
Octave relies on too many arcane langauge features, and I think my
development of Octave has been quite conservative with respect to new
langauge features.  But as a newcomer to Octave, you are probably not
aware of the ways that Octave has had to adapt to all the changes in
C++ over the last 10 years or so, and how much effort has been spent
doing that.  Even now, you can't expect that any serious C++ project
will compile with any and all C++ compilers.  Someday, maybe, but for
now the compilers still seem to be catching up to the standard, so
these kinds of problems are likely to be with us for a while longer.

| Is there any way to simply get a working binary distribution, say a Linux
| RPM, or even just everything in a .tgz file?  The page says
| that binaries are available from Linux vendors, but I can't find any sign
| of them on either the SuSe or Red Hat web sites.  There is an older binary
| on the distribution CD (2.0.14 or some such), but that doesn't work at
| all.

There are limited resources, and building binaries of the latest CVS
sources is not high on the list of priorities.

As it is, I think you've already received quite a lot of support for
free (I implemented "end" and local functions just recently, in part
because of your requests).  Would you care to give something back to
the probject (code, or perhaps funding to help pay for the cost of
providing the new features you requested or to make binary packages 
available), or would you just like to complain about what you're
getting for free?


Octave is freely available under the terms of the GNU GPL.

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