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[Bug default/18838] Normalize the output of abidw


--- Comment #2 from dodji at redhat dot com ---
(In reply to andrew.c.morrow from comment #1)
> This is also important when using the output of abidw to prune unnecessary
> dynamic relinks in a build system.
> It might also be useful for that use case to have an 'abihash' utility,
> which would traverse the libabigail data structures, but instead of emitting
> an XML representation, would just emit a summary MD5 or SHA1 of the relevant
> info.

I have been thinking about this.

I think that if comparing two versions of a library L is fast enough, it might
be better to do that, and if the ABI changed in an incompatible way, then
trigger the re-linking of applications that linked against the older version of

I am saying this because I think that having the ABIs of the two versions of L
being different doesn't necessary imply that an application using L should be
re-linked against the newer version of L. For instance, if a new entry point
got added to L and the application doesn't use that new entry point, then it
doesn't need to be re-linked.  Heck, even if an entry got *removed* from L and
the application doesn't use that entry point, no re-linking should be

This is actually what the tool 'abicompat' is for.  If it detects that the
application is impacted by an ABI change that happened in L, then the
application ought to be re-linked.

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