Questions about Fontconfig-2.4.2

Randy McMurchy randy at
Wed Dec 12 15:21:06 PST 2007

Chris wrote:
> I know the basics of compiling software, but I do not understand how the BLFS-dev team 
> comes up with the commands on some of the packages.  Example, for the Fontconfig-2.4.2 package,
> the BLFS Book [1] states. 
> 		/configure --prefix=/usr \
> 		    --sysconfdir=/etc --localstatedir=/var \
> 		    --disable-docs --without-add-fonts \
> 		    --with-docdir=/usr/share/doc/fontconfig-2.4.2 &&
> 		make
> I understand the above section,

Actually, the installation script shipped in the Fontconfig
tarball is far from optimum. In fact, it probably could be
considered somewhat of a kludge.

The --disable-docs used above is key (I think, as I am going
on memory). This switch is used because if you do not use it,
then you must have DocBook-utils (including SGMLSpm and
JadeTeX) installed or the build will fail.

Now, because we use that switch, the docs are not installed
by default.

> but what throws me for a loop is.
> 		make install &&
> 		install -v -m644 doc/*.3 /usr/share/man/man3 &&
> 		install -v -m644 doc/*.5 /usr/share/man/man5 &&
> 		install -v -m755 \
> 		        -d /usr/share/doc/fontconfig-2.4.2/fontconfig-devel &&
> 		install -v -m644 doc/*.{html,pdf,txt} \
> 		        /usr/share/doc/fontconfig-2.4.2 &&
> 		install -v -m644 doc/fontconfig-devel/* \
> 		        /usr/share/doc/fontconfig-2.4.2/fontconfig-devel

You will see this same syntax structure in many of the BLFS
packages. These commands are used to manually install the
documentation files. In the case of Fontconfig, because we
pass the --disable-docs parameter, the documentation
(including man files) is not installed. All the commands
above simply install the docs in the appropriate locations.

If those commands were not there, no documentation at all
would be installed.

> What I do not understand is where the commands that are used in the BLFS Book came from, and 
> how did the BLFS-dev team find this information?

We developed the commands (they are trivial) and nobody really
had to "find" them. There is pre-built documentation included
in the tarball but it is not installed, so we use the commands
above to install the docs.

Hopefully, this makes sense to you and you now see why the
commands are there, and what they do.


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