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Re: Which variable expands to /var?

From: Bernd Jendrissek
Subject: Re: Which variable expands to /var?
Date: Thu, 7 Feb 2008 17:24:54 +0200

On Feb 7, 2008 5:09 PM, Jules Colding <address@hidden> wrote:
> On Thu, 2008-02-07 at 05:31 -0700, Eric Blake wrote:
> > Autoconf follows the GNU Coding Standards, which states that the package
> > must install into ${prefix}/var unless configured otherwise.  Yes, this
> > default conflicts with the recommendations of FHS, meaning that to follow
> > the FHS, you must select the the alternate path at configure time.  Most
> > distros include a packaging system that takes care of calling configure
> > with the correct arguments for that distro.  Sorry, this isn't likely to
> > change in autoconf.
> Wouldn't the world be a better place if the GNU Coding Standards
> respected the FHS?
> IMHO it would.

Perhaps, but I think the reasoning is that the common case is that of
users installing packages into /usr/local, so as not to interfere with
the operating system.  Which makes localstatedir be /usr/local/var -
away from /var where it could cause trouble.  Because it's the common
case, it gets optimised (in terms of number of required ./configure

If OTOH you're one of the (presumably) few who install into
--prefix=/usr, you also need to do --localstatedir=/var separately.
Think of it as a sort of Huffman encoding for common configurations.

I agree that It Would Be Nice (tm) if ./configure would automagically
choose FHS defaults if you asked it by, for example, specifying
--prefix=/usr.  Then again, how would it know WHICH hierarchy standard
to obey?

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