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These files are used by a program called aclocal (part of the GNU automake package) which uses them to create aclocal.m4 which is in turn used by autoconf to create the configure script at the the top level in this distribution. (Actually, as we need to change a few `standard' macros, we need to create acinclude.m4 by concatenating all m4 files in this directory before running aclocal.) The files are as follows. R.m4 contains R specific macros. Some of these might be useful for other systems as well, but we first need to split this into pieces. R_BLAS_LIBS is based on the AC_ARG_WITH(fastblas) code from Octave, but with tests for Alpha CXML/DXML and IRIX SCSL and SGIMATH libraries commented out. Some macros do not conform to the Autoconf $PKG_$CATEGORY_$FOO naming scheme. These test for `features' such as GNOME, zlib, etc., are named R_$FEATURE, and typically define HAVE_$FEATURE. am-fixes.m4 contains R specific versions of AM_INIT_AUTOMAKE AM_MISSING_PROG These are necessary to work around a problem in the current release version of automake/aclocal in determining missing_dir with zsh (problem with CDPATH and pwd; see the docs in the autoconf CVS for more info). Note that the current (2001-04-27) automake CVS has a 2-arg only version of AM_MISSING_PROG. gnome-gnorba-check.m4 gnome-orbit-check.m4 gnome.m4 libglade.m4 are from the GNOME project and used for the GNOME configuration. Changes made in gnome.m4: * Replace AC_ARG_WITH(gnome) by our version in configure.in because we need want_gnome=no by default and use LIBS and CPPFLAGS rather than LDFLAGS and CFLAGS. * In AC_ARG_WITH(gnome-includes), standardize doc strings and use CPPFLAGS rather than CFLAGS. * In AC_ARG_WITH(gnome-libs), standardize doc strings and use LIBS rather than LDFLAGS. Changes made in libglade.m4: * In AC_ARG_WITH(libglade-config), standardize doc strings. libtool.m4 is from libtool 1.4. Changes made: one typo fixed (fixed in 1.4a or better).