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From: Ali Azarbayejani (ali_at_[hidden])
Date: 2003-03-24 17:10:31

David Abrahams wrote:
> >> It seems as though this could be expressed more simply like this:
> >>
> >> lib b : b.cpp : : : <include>./include/b ;
> >> lib a : a.cpp b : : : <include>./include/a ;
> >> exe e : e.cpp a ;
> >
> > As written, this would mean that 'b' should be linked into 'a' --- which
> > is something we don't support (and not sure we should).
> Yeah, it's not consistently achievable across platforms. I think Ali
> is suggesting that the lib rule give special meaning to libs that
> appear in the list of sources for libs, though. IOW, it would
> translate the 2nd line into
> lib a : a.cpp : : : <include>./include/a <library>b ;
> I'm not sure I like that idea, but it's not completely unreasonable.

Actually, I would propose this translation

lib a : a.cpp : <uses>b : : <include>./include/a <library>b ;

But to dis-ambiguate the multiple uses of <library> consider, for the
purposes of illustration, a new feature <link-to> that represents the
usual purpose of <library>, and have <library> represent only the
higher-level purpose described above (i.e. shorthand for both <uses>
and <link-to>).

That is,

<uses>X (a.k.a. <dependency>) means append the Usage-Req's of X to
my Requirements (recursively) (as currently implemented for

<link-to>X appearing in properties means X must be linked in when
any linking takes place (as <library> is currently
implemented when used in Usage-Req's of a lib or Req's of an

<library>X now exclusively means shorthand for both Requirement
<uses> and Usage Requirement <link-to> (as <library> is
currently implemented as Requirement for "lib" target)


lib b ;

# Normally, how static or shared libraries depend on each other.
# Note that using the low-level features <uses> and <link-to>
# requires a redundant specification. Usually, even with many
# template libraries, if you <uses>, you also <link-to>.
lib a : a.cpp : <uses>b : : <link-to>b ;

# Shorthand for above (proposed)
lib a : a.cpp b ;

# Shorthand for above (proposed) (N.B. a client of lib "a" would
# get <link-to>b; it wouldn't get <uses>b or <library>b...literally
# shorthand for the above.)
lib a : a.cpp : <library>b ;

# If you wanted to have a statically-linked DLL, you would have to
# do something like this. This would somehow have to interact with
# the <link> feature. Note the difference.
lib a : a.cpp : <uses>b <link-to>b ;

# If, e.g., b's headers are in a's public interface, you might do
# the following to expose b's usage requirements. (Again, from a
# purist SW architecture point of view, I always recommend against
# this sort of sneaky thing...but it comes up and this is how to do
# it.)
lib a : a.cpp : <library>b : : <uses>b ;

# These would be unusual, but illustrate what <library> in
# usage-requirements means.
lib a : a.cpp : : : <uses>b <link-to>b ; # client to lib a uses and
links b
lib a : a.cpp : : : <library>b ; # same as above

# N.B. the second line would basically would pass on the <library>
# property to the client of "a", which would then expand it to
# Requirement <uses>b and ((for a "lib") Usage-Requirement <link-to>b
# or (for a "exe") Requirement <link-to> b). Thus, functionally,
# <library> only gets expanded when it is a Requirement.

# Executables

exe e : e.cpp : <link-to>b ; # e merely links to b
exe e : e.cpp : <uses>b <link-to>b ; # e directly uses b and links
to b
exe e : e.cpp b ; # same as above (uses and
exe e : e.cpp : <library>b ; # same as above (uses and

> Maybe I'm coming around to Ali's point: if whether you want
> <library>somelib or <uses>somelib is determined entirely by the kind
> of target being declared (lib or exe), we should collapse the
> distinction in the feature names, and just give it different semantics
> depending on context.

My new <library> feature described above will achieve this for the
normal cases. But you may want to keep the lower-level <uses> and
<link-to> properties for the various cases when normal semantics need
to be overridden (e.g. statically linking a DLL, or passing through
usage requirements for a variety of possible reasons).

> One other concern I have is the common need to repeat properties in
> the requirements and usage-requirements sections, particularly some
> defines and most includes. It would be nice to eliminate that
> redundancy.

The above proposal addresses some of least you don't need to
specify both <uses> and <link-to> most of the time.



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