Missing /opt/local/share/man/whatis DB

Rainer Müller raimue at macports.org
Thu Jun 22 12:57:36 UTC 2017

On 2017-06-21 01:53, Stephen Baber wrote:
> Author of JPortsUI here.  I have built features into the next version
> of my application that use the "whatis" DB to describe the executable
> files installed after MacPorts completes a "port install foo".
> Presently I am letting the user know that this feature won't work for
> them until they Terminal in and run "sudo /usr/libexec/makewhatis
> /opt/local/share/man".
> My question is, were there configuration consequences that MacPorts
> needed to avoid as the reason it does not "makewhatis" itself upon
> updating or installing ports?  All I can foresee is that the
> additional information might change expected responses from "apropos"
> (which would never be used in a production shell script anyway).
> Should I not even be encouraging my users to run "makewhatis" in your
> "/opt/local/share/man/" directory?

This request goes in a similar direction than what we have already
pending for info for a long time:


Technically, there is no hold up to add functionality to run makewhatis
automatically, it just needs someone to do it. In the current state,
running makewhatis manually is safe.

Going further into the development idea for base, that would ideally be
a generic hook interface for activate/deactivate. There are lots of
ports that would benefit from this, all that are running utils to update
databases after port activation.

In addition to man and info, I can immediately think of:

  update-mime-database (shared-mime-info)
  update-desktop-database (desktop-file-utils)
  gtk-update-icon-cache (gtk{2,3})


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