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Re: FW: [Mingw-msys] How do I recreate the MSYS distribution?

On Sat, 2007-10-27 at 02:42 -0400, Brandon Van Every wrote:
> > Unofficially, I'd say "why not just do a `mkdir -p /usr/local', and
> > install there anyway"?  The consensus viewpoint has always puzzled
> > me, in this respect--I really don't like polluting the /mingw tree,
> > with non-MinGW user added applications, but I can understand and
> > accept the arguments in favour of doing it that way.
> It occurs to me, if the point of MSYS is to provide a POSIXy build
> environment, why assume that MinGW is even installed?  MSYS doesn't
> require MinGW for its operation.

It doesn't, and as I've already stated, I often use MSYS without having
MinGW installed.

> That would seem to make /mingw an unreasonable default.

The pre-compiled packages we provide, as contributions to the MinGW
Project, are for the most part intended to complement MinGW; thus it is
perfectly reasonable for us to assume that MinGW will be installed.  As
standard, MSYS provides /mingw as the installation root for MinGW.

The mingwPORT scripts we provide, to facilitate building of packages
from source for less experienced users, require *both* MSYS and MinGW to
be installed; again, it's not unreasonable for us to assume that /mingw
will actually be present, where /usr/local may not be.

> What if we're using other C/C++ compilers, or other programming
> languages?

In that case, why do you care?  If you are not using MinGW, and you
don't simply want MSYS because of its superior, (compared with cmd.exe),
stand alone shell capabilities, you are unlikely to be using it anyway.
Other compilers for Woe32 tend to come with their own IDEs.

> /usr/local strikes me as "more normal" or "more POSIX."

Agreed.  It happens to also be my preferred location for installing the
native packages I build, and deploy from the MSYS shell, but I am also
sufficiently open minded to consider alternative points of view.

> What's so POSIX about a /mingw directory?

Nothing.  It's simply a standard defined by *MSYS*, as a convenient
installation path for MinGW.

> Looked at that way, it's downright weird.

No, it's not.  It's just not something you're used to, and you haven't
considered any plausible rationale for making that choice.

> It's not GCS either.  Autoconf doesn't default to /mingw, it defaults
> to /usr/local.

So what?  MSYS is a package which provides a shell environment; it is
distributed by the MinGW Project.  MinGW isn't a GNU project; we aren't
governed by the GCS; neither are our standards dictated by what the
Autoconf folks do.


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