[webkit-dev] [webkit meeting notes] build systems

Peter Kasting pkasting at google.com
Thu Apr 15 21:42:01 PDT 2010

On Thu, Apr 15, 2010 at 9:15 PM, Kevin Ollivier <kevino at theolliviers.com>wrote:

> Anyway, my $0.02 is that, in terms of immediate bang for the buck, we're
> probably better off trying to synchronize the build systems automatically in
> some way. My perception is that Qt developers will want to use qmake, GTK
> will want to use autotools, etc. and while some build systems could
> certainly be merged (e.g. as you say the Win and Mac projects for WebKit
> itself could be gyp-generated), I don't think we'll ever really narrow it
> down to one master system for a variety of reasons. I do, however, think we
> may be able to narrow the 'build system updating' process down to one step /
> one script that updates all ports simultaneously, and do so without too much
> effort.

If I'm not mistaking you, that seems to be the route Evan is discussing,
with his concrete proposal being to investigate the feasibility of making
gyp be the mechanism by which various different build systems can be
generated from a single place (rather than seven).  Or is this not what you
were saying?

Since most build systems out there have their data stored in either XML or
> plain text, converting a build file list from one build system's data format
> to another is probably not more than a few hours of Python hacking, if that.

Indeed, we already have MSVC/XCode/makefile generators for gyp, I would
assume that given those, a generator for e.g. qmake wouldn't be hard.

I really think someone should seriously consider investing some time and
> resources into improving this issue though, updating a build system doesn't
> take long but updating 7-10 build systems on almost a daily basis probably
> adds up to some pretty significant amount of time and energy that could
> probably be spent on better things.

I think that is the shared viewpoint that has led to this discussion.

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