[fpc-pascal] When are used units recompiled?

Micha Nelissen micha at neli.hopto.org
Wed Apr 5 22:32:51 CEST 2006

On Wed, 5 Apr 2006 19:27:07 +0200 (CEST)
Michael Van Canneyt <michael at freepascal.org> wrote:

> On Wed, 5 Apr 2006, Micha Nelissen wrote:
> > I don't agree: RTFM is *not* an excuse for insightful, to-the-point,
> > clear, not too elaborate error messages.
> Yes, and the 'elaborateness' is controlled by the -v setting.
> The point is that "Can't find unit foo" can have several causes.

Exactly! So: split them out, with a separate message for each of them.
That's why we have separate messages anyway, right? To be helpful...
> To find out the exact cause, you must use -vu. To find out even 
> more, you use -vut. after that, it's -va...
> RTFM is not an excuse, but people should also take some initiative 
> and start looking for the cause of trouble. The first thing is to 
> increase the verboseness of the compiler... For this, you should
> read the manual.

In one of the cases above, of the "several causes", you might need extra
verbosity indeed, but there are at least two cases where a more helpful and
to the point error message can be given.

If you do not want to prioritize this item, it's fine, but please keep it
open at wishlist level.

> It's hard to determine the exact number/amount of messages that is 
> useful to detect/resolve problems. To get more 'feeling' for how 
> to resolve problems, one can and should read the manual...

This very much sounds like the C mentality TBH: assume people know
exactly what they are doing or burn them with cryptic error messages:
one needs to debug it all in the aclocal/autoconf/automake/configure/...
scripts and figure it out yourself.

I'm not saying people shouldn't read manuals...just saying that "Can't find
unit" can be split up in 3 or so "causes", and a more helpful message given
for each of them.


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