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From: Dean Michael Berris (dmberris_at_[hidden])
Date: 2007-05-13 12:00:02

For whatever it's worth, I'd like to give my opinions about this issue.

I've personally handled some serious projects with serious build
configurations which border from the trivial to the bizarre. I have
had the experience of trying to build/port an application between
Windows and Linux more than once while I also try to write libraries
that will build on either platform. I've tried to do this before with
"just auto-make and friends" and Boost.Build (v2 mostly) and I all I
can say is that the first time I tried BBv2 it's simple enough to
understand and use.

Now I haven't been using Boost (or developing for Boost (yet) for the
matter) as long as others on the list have so I haven't experienced
the pain of building BBv1 and then transitioning to BBv2. But I have
been able to use BBv2 extensively in at least a couple of projects
(two of which open source, and two of which not open source) and all I
can say is that it's been a breeze to use.

What I particularly like about BBv2 is how easy it seems to make a
Jamfile.v2 from scratch and modify it according to your later
requirements without the pain you usually deal with in the Make family
of tools. Although I understand the apprehension of maintaining the
Jam sources (in C most of it) and even the Boost.Build .jam files, I
for one have seen the benefits of such a system as being part of

I guess the thought of using something not-Boost maintained is brought
about by the obvious hardships in maintaining .jam files in
Boost.Build itself, and extending the tool chain as well as the mere
maintenance of the code to fight fires and squash bugs that seem to be
never ending.

The apprehension I feel in adopting CMake is with the inertia and the
investment a lot of people have put into (me included) understanding
and using effectively not only the Boost library but the excellent
build system that comes with it "for free". I think I won't be alone
in saying that people who have been burnt by the sheer nightmare that
is writing a Makefile and maintaining it (even with the autotools)
welcome the breeze that is Boost.Build and Boost.Jam . I don't know if
it might be the name "CMake" but anything (IMO) remotely related to
Make just turns me and a lot of developers who've dealt with it before

Now I guess it might be too much to ask, but what if we allow some
CMake specific stuff into Boost -- I mean, just include the build
files in there and not require the Boost library to restructure itself
and/or the files if it would be possible -- and let the users choose
whether to use Boost.Jam+Boost.Build or CMake when building Boost for
their system, we might be doing everyone a service by providing viable

If someone wants to pick up the task of using CMake to build Boost and
contribute that knowledge/effort into the library/project, then I
don't see why we should abandon Boost.Build and Boost.Jam when people
still seem to want to use it.

It might be a naive question, but why can't we let these build-system
specific files reside in the distribution and let users pick which one
works for them? I'm positive we can make the CMake and Boost.Build
stuff reside in the same distribution and not have to abandon one in
favor of another.

I for one wouldn't want to see Boost.Build or Boost.Jam deprecated
because I've greatly benefited from these technologies greatly. I just
wish I could help make them tools better, or at least help it be the
tool that the community would like it to be.

//Steps down from Soap Box

So personally, I'd like to still stick with Boost.Build and Boost.Jam
-- and hope we can articulate the requirements somehow and file
tickets for them so people can actually pick up where others left off
and improve Boost.Build and Boost.Jam for everyone's sake. That
however doesn't mean I would reject a well-meant effort of putting in
the CMake build instructions/files into the distribution just as long
as BBv2 and Boost.Jam stay.

I hope this makes sense. (If not, sorry for the noise).

On 5/13/07, Bill Hoffman <bill.hoffman_at_[hidden]> wrote:
> David Abrahams wrote:
> > on Sat May 12 2007, "Douglas Gregor" <> wrote:
> >
> >
> >>>
> >> Did you rely on the online documentation, or did you also buy the book,
> >> "Mastering CMake"?
> >>
> >
> > According to what Bill Hoffman told me, part of the reason the docs
> > are confusing is that the book is outdated.
> >
> >
> I don't think I said that... I certainly did not mean to say it... :-)
> There are a few things that have been updated since the book, and
> they are covered here:
> -Bill
> _______________________________________________
> Unsubscribe & other changes:

Dean Michael C. Berris
mikhailberis AT gmail DOT com
+63 928 7291459

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