[vlc-devel] Rethinking the contribs

Rémi Denis-Courmont remi at remlab.net
Wed Feb 23 13:00:57 CET 2011


I might (or not) have time and/or use for the contribs. Unfortunately, the
state of contribs is rather disastrous at the moment, especially on Linux.
So I've been considering a complete rewrite (of the build system, of course
not the patches). I have a number of issues with the current stuff...

* The build dependencies are just plain broken. If make is interrupted or
an errors occurs, it is often impossible to resume it without manually
removing stuff from the build area. This intrinsically requires a rewrite
of the build rules in any case.

* We already have 15 distribution files, with more or less arbitrary stuff
selected in each of them. I find this intractable. There is a lot of room
for automating the list of stuff to be built, instead of relying on the
user to select a distribution. This probably requires autoconf. This
implies autoconf itself needs to be bootstrapped separately on the wasted
fruit operating system, but then again, we may need to bootstrap gmake too

* Dependencies within contribs just don't work. It is basically assumed
that all the dependencies other than libc must be built. This works find on
Windows, but it is completely broken on Linux.

* Offline builds are impossible. There is no sane way to fetch the sources
and build later. There is also no way to fetch only the sources that you
actually intend to compile.

* It is debatable whether this belongs in vlc.git at all, as it is not
quite following the release cycle of VLC. I mean, we often use the "trunk"
contrib to compile the "stable branch" VLC...

Rémi Denis-Courmont

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