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config file location.

From: Guillaume Rousse
Subject: config file location.
Date: Thu, 24 Mar 2005 13:26:32 +0100
User-agent: Mozilla Thunderbird 1.0.2 (X11/20050322)

Maybe a stupid question, but I don't understand how config file location is to be handled with autotools.

autoconf evaluates quite logically sysconfdir to %(prefix)/etc, meaning /usr/local/etc by default, and /usr/etc when prefix is set to /usr. However, in real life, I never saw those directory used (at least in Linux world). rpm %configure macro, for instance, force --sysconfdir to /etc.

The GNU coding standards says
The directory for installing read-only data files that pertain to a single machine–that is to say, files for configuring a host. Mailer and network configuration files, /etc/passwd, and so forth belong here. All the files in this directory should be ordinary ASCII text files. This directory should normally be /usr/local/etc, but write it as $(prefix)/etc. (If you are using Autoconf, write it as address@hidden@'.)

Which sounds exactly like I just said: theory should be $(prefix)/etc, reality is /etc. And autoconf enforces theory.

So, am I supposed to use the sysconfdir macro, and have my configuration files installated in logical but unusual places by manual installation, or hardcode '/etc' path instead in my own programs and ?

Everything always works in your HQ, everything always fails in the Colonel's HQ
                -- Murphy's Military Laws n°30

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