MacPorts manual, or info on MacPorts development

Ryan Schmidt ryandesign at
Fri Jun 29 23:38:41 PDT 2007

On Jun 28, 2007, at 13:27, Brian Campbell wrote:

> If I install directly from Subversion, will it automatically (as  
> the manual implies) use the Subversion dports tree (or mports tree,  
> as of the name migration) in sources.conf.

Regardless of whether you install the binary or compile the source  
from Subversion, it gets the dports tree from the location configured  
in sources.conf. By default that's fetched using rsync but you can  
change it to a Subversion working copy if you want.

> Also, if you install from Subversion, will the distfiles and build  
> directories be in the /opt/local tree, or will they be somewhere in  
> the Subversion checkout tree?

With the binary installer, /opt/local is the prefix. When you build  
from source, /opt/local is the default prefix but you can select  
another if you prefer. The distfiles and build directories are  
beneath the prefix.

> Finally, is it possible to switch an installation from the binary  
> install to one based on Subversion, so you can hack on the latest  
> code without having to blow away your /opt/local and start over?

Yes; just check out the source, configure, make and sudo make  
install. It will overwrite the relevant files in /opt/local. I've  
done this before.

> I guess on the "one best way" thing, what I'd like is one  
> reasonably good way that we can document in the manual, and that  
> will work for people who have started out from installing a regular  
> binary install or a SVN install and don't want to mess up their  
> whole /opt/local tree. In most projects, what you do to develop is  
> just check out of CVS/SVN/whatever, do whatever autoconf/configure/ 
> make dance you need to build the project, and then you can test  
> everything from your build directory before you do a make install.  
> For something like DarwinPorts, though, you need to be mucking with  
> your actual installation, which when you depend on it and don't  
> want to have to reinstall from scratch, can be a little scary.

I've never had to blow away /opt/local and start over. I use sudo for  
most port commands, because they complain about permissions if I  
don't. I could chown various directories but so far I haven't bothered.

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