Where should non-macports sw be installed? (Was: Problem with Macports, homebrew, and ghostscript)

Art McGee amcgee at gmail.com
Wed Feb 12 15:50:07 PST 2014

> I understand why installing in /usr/local can mess up macports, but
> macports doesn't have everything, and most third-party software wants to go
> into /usr/local. Where should this stuff go, if not /usr/local?

Actually, I don't think there is that much of a problem with installing
software in /usr/local, the problem is the particular way that Homebrew
does it by default, taking over /usr/local completely, and it's disregard
for standard ownership and permissions.

As long as you insure that MacPorts comes before /usr/local in your paths:

export PATH="/opt/local/sbin:/opt/local/bin:${PATH}"
export MANPATH="/opt/local/share/man:${MANPATH}"
export INFOPATH="/opt/local/share/info:${INFOPATH}"

you shouldn't have any problems.

I can only speak from personal experience, but I have lots of third-party
stuff installed in /usr/local from binary .pkg installers and manually, and
I haven't experienced any issues as a result of that.

On a related note, Homebrew is actually based on GNU Stow. It's basically a
clone/ripoff with enhancements. If you're going to use Homebrew, then use
it in the same way suggested for Stow, and install packages in your home
directory, leaving /usr/local alone.

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