Debugging rtems-docs Sphinx issue

Ryan Long ryan.long at
Wed Feb 3 18:51:01 UTC 2021


I applied your patch, but it still isn’t working for me. The error is the same in the console output and config.log.
The ./waf configure command that I’m running is

./waf configure --prefix='`pwd`' –pdf

I don’t know if that could be part of the issue.


From: Gedare Bloom <gedare at>
Sent: Wednesday, February 3, 2021 11:28 AM
To: Ryan Long <ryan.long at>
Cc: devel at
Subject: Re: Debugging rtems-docs Sphinx issue

Hi Ryan,

On Tue, Feb 2, 2021 at 2:53 PM Ryan Long <ryan.long at<mailto:ryan.long at>> wrote:

I’m working on .  The following command is being issued:

/home/rlong/nta-workspace/nta-docs/sphinx/bin/sphinx-build -b html -D extensions=sphinxcontrib.bibtex -C . out contents.rst ->

If I run this with the “->” at the end, I get “bash: syntax error near unexpected token `newline'” as the erro message. If I run it without the arrow,
It prints out the usage, and it says “sphinx-build: error: cannot find files ['contents.rst']”.

That -> is not valid bash syntax. I guess that is something out of the waf error logging. You can see where these checks are built in common/

contents.rst appears to be something generated dynamically by that in check_sphinx_extension, so that is not something you can test independently.

I tried adding the recommended configuration settings to each of the files as sphinxcontrib-bibtex’s documentation recommended, and
I added “master_doc = 'contents'” to each of them as well based on the warning message from config.log. Neither had any effect.

I think the master_doc thing is unrelated.

Does anyone know how to fix this?

It looks like the important part is actually this:

Extension error:
You must configure the bibtex_bibfiles setting
So our that checks the sphinxcontrib.bibtex extension does not pass through the bibtex_bibfiles setting.

Since that check uses the -C flag, the config file doesn't get read, so modifying will bring no joy. That said, we should include that bibtex_bibfiles in our, so I add that in a separate patch.

You can create a file contents.rst by hand and put in it the same:
.. COMMENT sphinx test

then you can run
$ sphinx-build -b html -D extensions=sphinx.ext.autodoc -C . out contents.rst
for example

Unfortunately, I can't seem to figure out how to pass the bibtex_bibfiles list to the command line. Everything I tried ends up parsing it into individual characters, e.g.,
$ touch refs.bib
$ sphinx-build -b html -D extensions=sphinxcontrib.bibtex -D bibtex_bibfiles=refs.bib -C . out contents.rst

WARNING: could not open bibtex file /mnt/devel/rtems/rtems-docs/build/r.
WARNING: could not open bibtex file /mnt/devel/rtems/rtems-docs/build/e.
WARNING: could not open bibtex file /mnt/devel/rtems/rtems-docs/build/f.
WARNING: could not open bibtex file /mnt/devel/rtems/rtems-docs/build/s.
then it dies because it can't open .

What I could get to work is to create a minimal config file and pass that:
$ echo "bibtex_bibfiles = ['refs.bib']" >
sphinx-build -b html -D extensions=sphinxcontrib.bibtex -c . . out contents.rst

So I made the check rule dynamically create refs.bib and within the testbuild directory. It might be more elegant to figure out how to pass the _list_ that contains refs.bib in the command line -D version, but this seemed to work.

I also added the bibtex_bibfiles setting to our common/ file. Please try out the patch I just sent.


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