macports python crashing?

Kevin Ballard eridius at
Thu Feb 1 08:38:48 PST 2007

Not really. The /opt/local directory hierarchy is root:admin, and the  
work directories exist as part of this hierarchy, so simply creating  
the work directory requires root privileges. This is in general a  
Good Thing, as it means unprivileged users can't build their own  
packages through port. You could go and modify the /opt/local/var/db/ 
dports/build tree to be user-writable, at which point you can *build*  
software without sudo (using, say, port destroot <software>, though  
you'd have to install dependencies first or it will try to do so and  
fail at installation), and then install it with sudo.

If you set the entire /opt/local tree to be user-writable, you should  
be able to fully install stuff without sudo, as long as it doesn't go  
out of that tree (a common exception that comes to mind is stuff that  
installs in /Applications/DarwinPorts).

I assume you're concerned about random software build processes being  
run with root privileges, yes? It seems to me the best solution is to  
run the actual configure/build/destroot steps themselves in an  
unprivileged child process (after ensuring that the extracted source  
is user-writable). Is that what you'd be interested in seeing?

On Feb 1, 2007, at 2:41 AM, Michael K. Edwards wrote:

> Oh, on that note -- is there a sensible way to avoid having anything
> other than the actual package installation step run as root?  If I had
> any sense I would have asked that before the first time I typed "port
> install".

Kevin Ballard
eridius at

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