[PATCH 0/4] RFC: Add Meson build

Pekka Paalanen ppaalanen at gmail.com
Tue Apr 24 09:26:19 UTC 2018

On Tue, 24 Apr 2018 09:03:05 +0100
Emmanuele Bassi <ebassi at gmail.com> wrote:

> On 23 April 2018 at 15:06, Pekka Paalanen <ppaalanen at gmail.com> wrote:
> > >  - the Doxygen-generated man pages are installed under $datadir/man,
> > >    instead of $mandir, because of Doxygen peculiarities, like forcing
> > >    the creation of a `man3` directory for no reason; additionally, Meson
> > >    doesn't really like it when custom targets start having
> > >    sub-directories. The current system is the least terrible I could
> > >    come up with, but the only way I figure it can be solved appropriately
> > >    is to write a Doxygen module for Meson. Sadly, I don't have the time
> > >    to work on it.  
> >
> > For a while I've been wondering if we should ditch doxygen and
> > everything we have and use, say, hotdoc[1] with the C extension[2] that
> > uses Clang to parse the code.
> >
> >  
> We use HotDoc at Endless for our SDK[0], and the results are definitely
> more pleasing to the eye than raw Doxygen — though I can't say if it works
> just as well when integrated with Meson. It definitely warrants exploration.
> [0]: http://endlessm.github.io/eos-knowledge-lib/docs/master/
> >  - no Publican support; I've asked on the #wayland IRC channel, and it  
> > >    seems it's mostly a relic of the initial documentation effort; it's
> > >    a lot easier to just dump the Doxygen-generated HTML, though it's
> > >    probably worth spending some time making the CSS nicer, given the
> > >    default Doxygen style being less than stellar.  
> >
> > Yeah, Publican was ripped out years ago, I would not expect it even
> > could run. Just the doc build system was left unsimplified AFAIU.
> >  
> The Autotools build does build it and install it, but I just looked at the
> resulting installed tree, not really at its contents.

We do build and install(?) the docbook (or whatever format it is now)
that originally was written with Publican. You may see directory or
file names or directory structure related to Publican, but those are
really just leftovers.

By ripping out Publican I mean the use of that tool, not the
documentation, which we publish at

> > >  - I haven't thoroughly tested this build. I've diff'd the installed
> > >    trees, and checked the exported symbols; I've also rebuilt GTK+ (both
> > >    stable and development branches) on top of it, but it *definitely*
> > >    needs some more testing.
> > >
> > > I wanted to drop this on the mailing list before I accidentaly leave it
> > > to rot on my repo.  
> >
> > I very much hope someone continues this effort.
> >
> >  
> I wanted to clarify this bit: I'd like to finish this work and get it
> merged; the Doxygen issue of not installing under the directory specified
> by `--mandir` is kind of the only blocker I see, especially if Publican's
> state means it can be skipped.

Well, there is no Publican. There is the "Wayland book" which we want
to keep on building and publishing. I don't think anyone cares about
how the build system builds it, as long as it builds it. The
'publish-doc' script might need updating also.

The mandir thing sounds problematic indeed.

> What I don't foresee having time to work on is either adding a Doxygen
> module for Meson, or porting the documentation to another system; I should
> be able to work with the Meson devs to get some fixes that would, at least,
> allow us to install the contents of the generated `man/man3` directory
> under `mandir`, though.

Very good, that is and perhaps exceeds a bit my expectations as well.

> Right now, I just wanted to get some review and feedback on the list of
> issues I've identified, and in case somebody wants to try this out, if
> there are other things I've missed.

I appreciate your effort very much.

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