[Openmcl-devel] issues with packaging Clozure Common Lisp (ccl.clozure.com) for Debian

Faheem Mitha faheem at faheem.info
Mon Jul 16 23:08:32 PDT 2012


I've run into a technical issue with packaging CCL, which I describe 
below. I don't know whether debian-mentors or debian-devel is a more 
appropriate forum to post this - please advise if mentors is 

CCL was once in Debian, but under a different name, namely openmcl. I 
believe the last release in which openmcl was in Debian was sarge. See 

The issue I describe below is similar to that in 

Basically, CCL requires itself to build. Since it is not currently in the 
Debian archive, that raises the question of how this should happen.

First, note that CCL itself recommends using a version of the release
which includes a binary compiler, namely 

See http://ccl.clozure.com/manual/chapter2.2.html#obtaining-via-svn Downloading a Release Version

This is equivalent to the tarball in 

At first blush, therefore, it would seem that the way to go is to use this 
version of the release and use the included binaries to build. 
Unfortunately, that creates the following problems:

1) On build the binaries are overwritten. This can be worked around by 
writing the binaries elsewhere, but this is ugly, and involves patching 
makefiles. This is what I have currently been doing, however.

2) The binaries are only shipped (in this case) for x86. So this 
particular tarball/checkout would only work for x86 and amd64, not for any 
other arch. For the other archs we would have no binary compiler to build 
with, unless we ship versions of the source for different archs, which I 
imagine is forbidden by policy.

On the other hand, one can checkout the source, which is available for the 
1.8 release from subversion via

svn export http://svn.clozure.com/publicsvn/openmcl/release/1.8/source

This does not include any binaries. However, the questions are then:

3) What do we use to build this in Debian? Per #220046, it seemed that it 
is Ok for Mlton to build-depend on itself, but in this case it is 
build-depending on an earlier version of itself.

4) I believe it is permissible to use a version of source code which does 
not correspond to any tarball release, but I'd appreciate a confirmation.

Please CC me on any reply - I'm not subscribed.

                                                           Regards, Faheem

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