Build Frustrations

Bill Vermillion bv at
Tue Nov 20 06:52:08 PST 2007

-segmentation fault- 
press any key to reboot 
Damn damn damn freebsd-questions-request at said, after restarting his 

> Date: Tue, 20 Nov 2007 00:44:36 -0600
> From: Paul Schmehl <pauls at>
> Subject: Re: Build Frustrations

> --On November 19, 2007 11:00:44 PM -0500 "Dan Mahoney, System Admin" 
> <danm at> wrote:

> > On Mon, 19 Nov 2007, Jerry McAllister wrote:

> >> You can tell ports where to install something. We used to
> >> install all of Apache in its own directory to make it easy to
> >> manipulate in a system we were installing in a lot of places.
> >> Check the ports doc and such.

> > Actually, I just tried this. This is not what I want.
> > If I go to cd /usr/ports/www/apache22, and do a make
> > PREFIX=/some/other/directory, I do NOT get the same thing
> > I'd get building apache from source. I get ALL the apache
> > prerequisites installed under /some/other/dir, as opposed
> > to the apache standards places (for example config files
> > which would normally be in /usr/local/apache/conf now get
> > installed in /some/other/directory/etc (the port installs
> > them in /usr/local/etc). As a bonus, dependent packages get
> > added to my package database under the same prefix, which
> > shouldn't happen. (i.e. I want ONLY the apache2.2 stuff in a
> > self-contained directory).

> Silly me. I had no idea there was a "standard place" for
> apache to put its stuff. On *some* linux builds, the conf
> files are in /etc/httpd/conf.d/ and the document root in
> /var/www. On FreeBSD they're in /usr/local/etc/apache{ver.}
> and /usr/local/www/apache{ver}, respectively. What's the
> "standard place" I wonder? I suspect it has a lot more to do
> with the conventions of the particular OS than it does with the
> application.

And on a SuSE system I've been called in to maintain the
webserver is on /srv/www while the conf files are in

About the only thing you can count on is that the files will be
somewhere on the system, and hopefully in your $PATH.

If the OP would take a look at  'man hier'  he would see
how all of the FreeBSD things should be laid out.

Having things under /usr - instead of the top directory which it
appears the OP has as he said he wanted one directory - will
make upgrades a bit more difficult.

One of the nice things about keeping just the OS on / and
all other addons on a /usr >filesystem< is that you can unmount
/usr and rebuild the entire OS, remaking / is you wish, and lose
nothing of your local addons.  It's a very intelligent design
IMO and it frustrates me when I got to different Linux systems [I
run FreeBSD at the ISP] and so many things are in different places.
It seems that some do this just ot differentiate them.  But then
again I have not looked at all 300+ Linux distros.   At least
the BSD derived variants are remarkable similar - and follow most
the same hierarchy for the past 20 years.

If the user weren't so set on just one filesystem [which is how I
remember the first part of the thread starting] he'd be running
now.  And woe be the day that / gets corrupted with everything
in one place.  My worsts instances of this was years ago when
data had to be saved, and / could be mounted ro as therw
was no lost+found space left.  [The old SysIII and SySV system
could not expand lost+found].

So I spend the next 3 days running /  in ro mode and then copying
and/or taring the needed data onto floppies for restore once the
OS was reinstalled.  After maintaing Unix system [ and variants] on
a least 6 different CPU bases since 1983 - I'm hard-coded to
having separate file systems.

Never turn your back on a running computer.


Bill Vermillion - bv @ wjv . com

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