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Re: bootstrap/5634: ../configure --prefix=~/... doesn't work

The following reply was made to PR other/5634; it has been noted by GNATS.

From: Phil Edwards <>
Subject: Re: bootstrap/5634: ../configure --prefix=~/... doesn't work
Date: Mon, 17 Feb 2003 23:23:56 -0500

 On Tue, Feb 18, 2003 at 04:12:02AM -0000, wrote:
 >     This is due to an inconsistent interaction with your shell, viz:
 >       $ echo prefix=~/install
 >       prefix=/home/bje/install
 >       $ echo --prefix=~/install
 >       --prefix=~/install
 >     Note that the ~ is expanded correctly in the first, but not the second.
 > It is unreasonable to expect all underlying GCC configury to handle ~
 > as a special case.  At the very least, this should be documented in the
 > installation documentation--do you agree?
 FYI, bash understands ~ as the first character in sub-words, such as this.
 But csh and tcsh only understand ~ as the first character in a main word,
 i.e., after whitespace.
 This isn't specific to us, so I wouldn't bother documenting it.  Anybody who
 uses a csh-family shell is going to run into these weird features eventually.
 If you do feel like documenting it, I suggest providing a link to a
 "here's an introduction to csh" page somewhere.
 I would therefore like to posit that computing's central challenge, viz. "How
 not to make a mess of it," has /not/ been met.
                                                  - Edsger Dijkstra, 1930-2002

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