Someone on IRC also had problems with libtool not being able to locate files. It's strange it doesn't build everywhere, since it builds fine for me on both openSUSE and Debian. Can you post the contents of one of the .la files? (they're text files)
You missed your window. I wiped the toolchain build directory yesterday. It's sitting on a relatively small SSD that is also the boot volume for that machine, and I needed the space back.
Did Ubuntu drop only the bulk package or all 32-bit packages? Since all that the toolchain should need is a 32-bit libc.
There is no longer a metapackage called "ia32-libs". There are still i386 packages denoted by :i386, but I really wouldn't count on those forever.
I'm not eager to add a 64-bit toolchain to the release, since it would lengthen the time it takes to make a release considerably
I can't speak for everyone else, but maybe a switch
to an amd64 toolchain? I haven't installed an i386 build of Linux--or any other OS--in a very long time. That's at home or at work.
Would it be a solution if we'd package the toolchain in a .deb package with the right dependencies declared? That would at least avoid building it twice.
It would help a bit, but I'm resolutely against supporting i386 until the end of time. If there's still people installing i386 Linux on amd64 machines, I've never met them. It's already been a decade from introduction, and it's been about six to seven years since every major distro got fully working, optimized amd64 builds of everything.
This is where my dev machine is now, and I'd like to keep it that way:
localhost ~ # uname -p
localhost ~ # dpkg -l | grep i386 | wc -l