Re: Announcing CML2, a replacement for the kbuild system

From: Joel Becker (
Date: Sat May 27 2000 - 04:25:12 EST

On Sat, May 27, 2000 at 01:34:21AM +0100, Alan Cox wrote:
> The BSD setup is not end user friendly. There is actually only one fundamental
> end user problem with our current setup. When a user says 'I want XYZ' it
> should turn on everything needed to get XYZ.

        What exactly do you call user friendly? I've not built a BSD
kernel, so I can't speak to them. But I'm waiting for a usable,
user-friendly linux kernel system.
        I've tried menuconfig, xconfig, and the like. Last I looked,
you had to specifically hunt for what you needed, and it was far from
intuitive what subheadings they lived in. Not to mention the obscure,
interesting, or fun options you can come across.
        I went back to "make config" and have happily stayed there. I
never miss an option I never knew I needed, and make oldconfig takes the
pain out of tweaking.
        I'm waiting for a user friendly front end for that. It'll
probably be something like debconf, I guess. Or a windows wizard.
        If Eric's new system allows me to configure in this way (or in
some way that doesn't hide my possible pratfalls and makes me aware of
what is available), and it makes dropping in a new module, driver, or
plain config choice that much easier, I'm all for it.
        Who cares what language he does it in? I don't much like Python
from a programming standpoint (personal prejudice against '\'
continuation lines and what I can do with my whitespace for
readability), but it gets the job done as well as Perl or Pike or
whatnot. A single language for this is better than 7 or so. I have
Python on all my boxes. If you don't like it, reimplement his reference
implementation in C, as has been suggested.
        Do not evaulate his proprosal based on his implementation.
Evaluate it on what it can do for the kernel. If we were frozen to one
implementation, we'd be using mbufs.



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