Portmaster general questions and problems

Doug Barton dougb at FreeBSD.org
Mon Dec 27 19:13:31 UTC 2010

FYI, I agree with most of what b.f. wrote, and I thank him for answering 
this. I don't follow -questions anymore, so it's very helpful when I get 
cc'ed on posts about portmaster.

A few additional thoughts ...

On 12/26/2010 21:13, b. f. wrote:

>> I'm trying to figure out what I'm doing wrong or what I don't
>> understand about portmaster.  I've looked on google and can't find any
>> documentation that isn't just basic stuff or rehashes of the man pages
>> (which are fine for reference, but not helpful in understanding how to
>> use it).
> This shouldn't be difficult:  portmaster isn't a clone of portupgrade,
> but the command-line options and behavior of the two are similar.
> Portmaster is actually somewhat easier to use because you don't have
> to worry about the extra databases that portupgrade uses. The
> portmaster manpage is fairly well written, and the EXAMPLES section
> demonstrates most of what the average user will need.

+1. :) I have spent considerable time on the man page, and encourage you 
to actually read it, beginning to end. It should give you all the 
information you need about how portmaster works. The most important 
thing to keep in mind is that (as b.f. pointed out above) portmaster is 
not a clone of portupgrade, nor was it ever designed to be.

>> Portmaster also doesn't seem to understand when ports are already
>> up-to-date, so doing this:
>> portmaster php5-*
>> To update all the php5 ports causes portmaster to re-install things
>> that are already up to date.  Is this expected behavior?

Yes. If you had read the man page you would have known that. :)  Also, 
the * at the end is not necessary.

>> if so, how
>> can I upgrade ports without typing each one my hand.  I'd rather not
>> run portmaster with -a since I don't want to blindly update everything.

The man page contains an example of an alias that you can use to wrap 
'portmaster -L' to give you a concise output of what ports need 
updating. Then you could do something like:
portmaster php-port1 php-port2 php-port3
to only update that subset of ports that you want.

Meanwhile, -a is usually the safest route, and some of the problems you 
are experiencing (in addition to not following the instructions in 
UPDATING) may be due to the fact that you're trying to outsmart the 
maintainers of all of your ports. :)




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