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From: John Maddock (John_Maddock_at_[hidden])
Date: 2002-02-21 07:18:19

>The main problem with portability is not the lack of a common build
>tool, but the lack of a maintainable configuration system. Anyone who
>thinks that loads of #ifdefs in header files is scalable hasn't been
>paying attention. This sort of static configuration means that boost
>is always out of date and you will be playing catch-up forever. This
>is one reason autoconf won over imake.

Point taken, but:

* Many like things to just plain work out of the box, without a configure
* there are some platforms where autoconf style configure scripts just
don't work - Borland C++ on Win32 for example (no not even with a cygwin
* the auto* tools do not address multiple build configurations (most win32
compilers ship with multiple (incompatible) runtime libs for example - we
need one build of each boost lib for each runtime variant).
* things like lib tool is not (yet) set up for C++ libraries - yes I know
it works with gcc, but not as far as I know with unix compilers that use
link-time instantiation or template repositories. Last time I looked the
docs cautioned against use with C++ libs.
* There is an optional autoconf based configure script for boost if you
want it. It's currently under used IMO, but it does work pretty well.

- John Maddock

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