I was wondering what the preferred way of building software in the BSDs is and if they are actively using and encouraging the use of GNU autotools.
I found the following section about GNU autoconf in the OpenBSD Handbook:
autoconf is a gnu tool that is supposed to help in writing portable programs. It is often used together with automake (portable makefiles) and libtool (portable shared libraries).
Those tools do not work all that well, and often create specific challenges in porting software to OpenBSD.
This seems not very encouraging. Does OpenBSD have its own autotools-like programs? Are you supposed to write the configure scripts yourself? I see that for example OpenSSH is using autoconf.
FreeBSD has a neutral section in its Handbook, but it is still in the "Special Considerations" section:
The various GNU autotools provide an abstraction mechanism for building a piece of software over a wide variety of operating systems and machine architectures. [...]