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Recursive Make

Posted on 2004-10-03
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Last Modified: 2010-05-18
How to create a recursive make?
I read from my lecture notes that Make can be recursive.
If possible, can also code out some .c or .h files to illustrate that?
A very simple one will do.

FYI, I am using Solaris Unix and GNU make.

I also read this on my lecture notes. What does the below mean? Can illustrate?
        Advise: call ${MAKE} instead of make


Thanks a lot
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Question by:ee_guest
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Assisted Solution

by:hongjun
hongjun earned 80 total points
ID: 12212374
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Expert Comment

by:grg99
ID: 12213722
"make" is intrinsically recursive.  that is, if you tell it to make "foo", and there's a rule saying "foo" depends on "goo", then make has to do an internal "make goo", which can lead to yet more makes for things that goo depends on.


Example:

foo:  goo


goo:   zoo bloo

zoo:   zoo.c   zoo.h

bloo:  bloo.c  bloo.h


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by:ee_guest
ID: 12214530
then can anyone explain this?
    Advise: call ${MAKE} instead of make
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by:grg99
ID: 12221015
On many systems there's more than one copy or version of "make".  There may be Solaris Make, dgpp make, Gnu make, watcom make, Microsoft Make, Borland make, etc...   All with slightly different or sometimes wildly different syntax and semantics and options and bugs.

So to select one particular make you can define a system environment variable somewhere  in your .login or autoexec.bat file:

SET MAKE=C:\\sr\local\bin\watcom\nt\make.exe

... then when you use the "CALL ${MAKE}" line, it expands to calling the make program defined above.

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Accepted Solution

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rghome earned 100 total points
ID: 12231092
Your lecturer might have been refering to the fact that you can call make from within a makefile. Often, you will use this if you want to make something in a different directory that has its own makefile. Although you can include makefiles within makefiles, this is not really recursive. The rules iin make are recursively applied, but if you want to run another makefile, you have to re-inovke make.

For example:

tests:
    $(MAKE) -f tests/makefile

The Macro $(MAKE) is used because you might want to change the make program that you use.
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