State of Pidgin: Build System

Gary Kramlich grim at
Tue Oct 3 03:13:46 EDT 2017

On Tue, Oct 3, 2017 at 2:04 AM, Eion Robb <eion at> wrote:

> TBH I don't really care much about which build system we use as long as it
> works :)
> As a side note, just changing the build system doesn't 100% help with
> Visual Studio due to an incompatibility between time_t with msvc (its
> always 64bit) compared to mingw (where it's the sizeof int)

Good to know!

> A few questions I have about the change:
> Does meson provide a way to compile using mingw?

Yes.  Meson does cross compiles via a toolchain file iirc (Elliot can
answer with more authority here as he's done it).  At any rate, it should
be doable.

> Does meson help with cross-compiling?

See previous response :)

> Would meson just be used for 3.0?

We could move 2.x.y to it, but that's a big change to the existing
packaging that's already in the distros.  I'm not sure which way they'd
rather go.

> Would you just use meson for one repo (RE: other email about splitting
> libpurple/Pidgin/Finch) first or would you suggest it be used for all repos?

I'd use it for all repos.  We've already moved gplugin to it for example.

> On 3 October 2017 at 18:58, Gary Kramlich <grim at> wrote:
>> Greetings Programs!
>> If you have not yet seen the introduction email with a subject of "State
>> of Pidgin: Introduction", please go read it first.
>> As some of you may be aware, we added support for meson
>> <> which is a new build system that was created
>> for gstreamer.  Meson was created due to the barrier to entry that
>> autotools creates.  Having been created for a GNOME project means that all
>> of the GNOME stuff is a first class citizen.  But more importantly than
>> that is that it supports Linux, BSD, Windows, and MacOS.  It's also worth
>> mentioning that most of the smaller GNOME projects have already made the
>> move to meson only.
>> On UNIX systemsIt generates ninja <> files which
>> on our testing, builds pidgin about 40% faster on average.  But it also can
>> export Visual Studio projects as well as XCode projects.  This has long
>> been a pain point for a lot of people when they want to use libpurple.
>> Meson fixes this problem with no work from us what so ever (as far as I
>> know).
>> Qulogic has done an amazing job working with the Meson developers on
>> getting it to work well with PIdgin as well, and he should be able to
>> answer any of the more technical questions you may have about it.
>> That said, I am proposing that we remove both the autotools build system
>> as well as the Windows MinGW makefiles from the project and standardize on
>> Meson and Meson only.  So please, discuss.
>> Thanks,
>> --
>> Gary Kramlich <grim at>
>> _______________________________________________
>> Devel mailing list
>> Devel at


Gary Kramlich <grim at>
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