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@dircategory GNU admin @direntry * automake: (automake). Making Makefile.in's

@dircategory Individual utilities @direntry * aclocal: (automake)Invoking aclocal. Generating aclocal.m4

Copyright (C) 1995, 96 Free Software Foundation, Inc.

This is the first edition of the GNU Automake documentation,
and is consistent with GNU Automake 1.3.

Published by the Free Software Foundation
59 Temple Place - Suite 330,
Boston, MA 02111-1307 USA

Permission is granted to make and distribute verbatim copies of this manual provided the copyright notice and this permission notice are preserved on all copies.

Permission is granted to copy and distribute modified versions of this manual under the conditions for verbatim copying, provided that the entire resulting derived work is distributed under the terms of a permission notice identical to this one.

Permission is granted to copy and distribute translations of this manual into another language, under the above conditions for modified versions, except that this permission notice may be stated in a translation approved by the Free Software Foundation.


Automake is a tool for automatically generating `Makefile.in's from files called `Makefile.am'. Each `Makefile.am' is basically a series of make macro definitions (with rules being thrown in occasionally). The generated `Makefile.in's are compliant with the GNU Makefile standards.

The GNU Makefile Standards Document (see section `Makefile Conventions' in The GNU Coding Standards) is long, complicated, and subject to change. The goal of Automake is to remove the burden of Makefile maintenance from the back of the individual GNU maintainer (and put it on the back of the Automake maintainer).

The typical Automake input files is simply a series of macro definitions. Each such file is processed to create a `Makefile.in'. There should generally be one `Makefile.am' per directory of a project.

Automake does constrain a project in certain ways; for instance it assumes that the project uses Autoconf (see section `The Autoconf Manual' in The Autoconf Manual), and enforces certain restrictions on the `configure.in' contents.

Automake requires perl in order to generate the `Makefile.in's. However, the distributions created by Automake are fully GNU standards-compliant, and do not require perl in order to be built.

Mail suggestions and bug reports for Automake to [email protected].

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