Annoying Heisenbug…

I’m a philologist, not a computer scientist for god’s sake… Lately I’ve been struggling with an annoying bug that prevented KDE 4.8 from starting up on Slackware64 14.0 (release candidate) when my Infinality-patched freetype was installed. After a few evenings spent on reading KDE bug reports, Distro bug reports, forum posts about hack solutions, glibc patches, articles about dynamic linking and whatnot, the problem (see link above) was resolved by changing a few lines in my freetype.SlackBuild, which btw was identical to the stock one, minus the Infinality patches:

CFLAGS="$SLKCFLAGS" make setup CFG="--prefix=/usr --libdir=/usr/lib${LIBDIRSUFFIX} --build=$ARCH-slackware-linux"

was changed to:

./configure \
  --prefix=/usr \
  --libdir=/usr/lib$LIBDIRSUFFIX \
  --disable-static \

Problem solved. How? I don’t know and I don’t care. One of the many bug reports (all of them described the same symptoms but had nothing to do with freetype or Infinality) mentioned the word Heisenbug, which I had never heard before :-)

So, I edited the SlackBuild and now everything is peachy again. I have also taken down all my pre-compiled packages for the moment. Until I rebuild them you can use the build scripts for Slackware 13.37/14.0.


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2 thoughts on “Annoying Heisenbug…

  1. Thanks a lot for solving this! I was hit by the same bug in the beginning of September, but never found time to figure it out. Now I can admire beautiful fonts again. After not using Infinality for all this time, it feels like I put on new glasses with a better prescription. :-)

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