Opened 10 months ago

Last modified 12 days ago

#21566 new task

Task ticket: Make sage (the distribution) behave like a standard autotools package, to the extent possible

Reported by: mkoeppe Owned by:
Priority: major Milestone: sage-7.5
Component: build Keywords:
Cc: vbraun, jdemeyer, fbissey, embray, dimpase, was, mmezzarobba, thansen Merged in:
Authors: Matthias Koeppe Reviewers:
Report Upstream: N/A Work issues:
Branch: Commit:
Dependencies: Stopgaps:

Description (last modified by mkoeppe)

The goal of this ticket is to be able to explain to experienced Unix users what sage-the-distribution is, as follows:

If you download sage-the-distribution and do

./configure --prefix=/SOMEWHERE && make 

then that's the same as doing a sequence of about 100 times:

wget SOMEPACKAGE.tar.gz && tar xf SOMEPACKAGE.tar.gz && (cd SOMEPACKAGE \
&& ./configure --prefix=/SOMEWHERE && make && make install)

(and about a 50 times pip install SOMEPACKAGE). sage-the-distribution has figured out the right order of installing these packages, tricky configure options so that everything works, and on top has fixes for various outdated/handwritten/missing build systems of various packages.

Thus it is beyond the scope of this ticket:

  • to separate make and make install. Our make install is a no-op. ANY discussion of this needs to go to ticket #21495, not here.

We will implement this goal without sacrificing any of the traditional convenience features that Sage-the-distribution has provided for the casual user (such as sage -i for installing packages; and that ./configure is an optional step of the installation process).

We have a separate task ticket for the following:

  • #21507: Make sagelib (sage-the-Python-library) a normal Python package, installable by setup.py, pip, etc. and eventually even via PyPI. We will NOT turn sagelib to an automake package (which was proposed in #14807).

(There will be some interaction with some of the steps of that ticket.)

Included on this ticket are the following steps.

Implement standard features expected of an autotools build system.

  • Choosing the installation hierarchy (configure --prefix=SAGE_LOCAL). Right now it is the subdirectory local of SAGE_ROOT.
    • #21501: Allow SAGE_LOCAL to be customized
    • #21534: Allow SAGE_LOCAL to be customized - follow-up
    • #21479: ./configure --prefix=SAGE_LOCAL
  • By allowing the user to choose the installation hierarchy, there are new requirements. What is installed there should run without requiring environment variables to be set. It should not refer to the environment variables SAGE_LOCAL, or SAGE_ROOT (or SAGE_SRC_ROOT). An exception could perhaps be made for the latter for "debugging" or "source inspection" facilities:
    • #21525: package autotools: Don't depend on $SAGE_LOCAL
    • #21509: Install cython_debug somewhere in SAGE_LOCAL
  • #21539: make V=0 should silence the build
  • #21775: make distclean: Don't delete the install hierarchy (SAGE_LOCAL)
  • #21589: Make make V=0 the default by ./configure --enable-silent-rules
  • #21591: Replace use of SAGE_ROOT by more specific environment variables
  • #21469: Enable VPATH builds (SAGE_SRC_ROOT/configure --srcdir=SAGE_SRC_ROOT)
  • #21538: ./configure --with-packages=...
  • #22646: ./configure CC=/path/to/gcc ...
  • Various other configure options, to replace use of environment variables that influence the build.

Clean up parts of the build system to make it more standard. This is to make it straightforward for developers familiar with the autotools system to contribute to sage.

  • #21532: Create SAGE_LOCAL directory hierarchy during make, not configure
  • #21524: configure.ac: write build/make/Makefile within an AC_CONFIG_COMMANDS, not during main configure

Make the separation between sage-the-distribution and sagelib (sage-the-Python-library) clearer. This will be beneficial for distributions such as Debian etc.

  • #21559: Move sage-the-distribution scripts from src/bin to build/bin
  • #21565: Add src/README.txt and build/README.txt

Following are workarounds to enable root-owned installation hierarchies (prefix).

  • #21537: If $SAGE_SUDO is set, use it whenever we do make install of a package. Subtickets:
    • #21726: Support splitting spkg install into spkg-build and spkg-install (for SAGE_SUDO)
  • #21536: documentation: Recommend GNU stow to people who want to install to /usr/local

Change History (23)

comment:1 Changed 10 months ago by mkoeppe

  • Cc was added

comment:2 Changed 10 months ago by mmezzarobba

  • Cc mmezzarobba added

comment:3 follow-up: Changed 10 months ago by mmezzarobba

Do you intend ./configure to detect already installed dependencies so that make skips installing them? (Eventually? as part of this task?) For example, is the idea that ./configure would finish by saying something like “the following dependencies are missing: ... please install them, or type make and I'll install my own copy”? (This wouldn't be quite standard, but close enough, while staying mostly compatible with the installation procedure of sage-the-distribution.)

Or would sage-the-distribution still always have its private version of everything, so that users would have to choose between installing it and installing sagelib directly (e.g., via pip)?

Last edited 10 months ago by mmezzarobba (previous) (diff)

comment:4 Changed 10 months ago by embray

(Sorry, the comment that was here previously was meant to go on #21507 -- I have too many tabs open)

Last edited 10 months ago by embray (previous) (diff)

comment:5 in reply to: ↑ 3 Changed 10 months ago by mkoeppe

Replying to mmezzarobba:

Do you intend ./configure to detect already installed dependencies so that make skips installing them? (Eventually? as part of this task?)

That is beyond the scope of this task ticket. But I would be interested in a follow-up ticket to this effect.

comment:6 Changed 10 months ago by mkoeppe

  • Description modified (diff)

comment:7 Changed 10 months ago by mkoeppe

  • Description modified (diff)

comment:8 Changed 10 months ago by mkoeppe

  • Description modified (diff)

comment:9 follow-ups: Changed 10 months ago by embray

Will this also fix how make actually runs configure for you, and that configure gets invoked even if you run make clean targets?

comment:10 in reply to: ↑ 9 ; follow-up: Changed 10 months ago by mkoeppe

  • Description modified (diff)

Replying to embray:

Will this also fix how make actually runs configure for you,

No, probably not. For this ticket, I want to keep configure an optional step of the installation process. (I've updated the description.)

and that configure gets invoked even if you run make clean targets?

Not sure about this one. To keep this ticket manageable, I want to change the top-level Makefile as little as possible. But please do open a ticket that describes make clean issues that ought to be addressed.

comment:11 in reply to: ↑ 10 Changed 10 months ago by embray

Replying to mkoeppe:

Replying to embray:

Will this also fix how make actually runs configure for you,

No, probably not. For this ticket, I want to keep configure an optional step of the installation process. (I've updated the description.)

I guess it would be fine to make it an optional step. But I don't think it should be a mandatory step for all make targets, and currently it is, or at least seems to be. For example if I run make maintainer-clean twice in a row, the second time will run configure only to delete its output.

This is especially annoying on Cygwin where configure is extremely slow.

comment:12 in reply to: ↑ 9 Changed 10 months ago by jdemeyer

Replying to embray:

Will this also fix how make actually runs configure for you, and that configure gets invoked even if you run make clean targets?

In standard autotools packages, the Makefile gets created by configure, so you wouldn't be able to run make clean either without configure.

comment:13 Changed 10 months ago by embray

True--in that case it should (hopefully) be a moot point. This is currently a huge annoyance for me.

comment:14 Changed 9 months ago by mkoeppe

  • Description modified (diff)

comment:15 Changed 9 months ago by mkoeppe

  • Description modified (diff)

comment:16 Changed 9 months ago by mkoeppe

  • Description modified (diff)

comment:17 Changed 8 months ago by mkoeppe

  • Cc thansen added

comment:18 follow-up: Changed 6 months ago by embray

Do we have a ticket somewhere for adding more configure-time checks for system packages? If there is I can't find it.

It's a little outside the scope of this ticket but not entirely. There are quite a few system packages installed by sage that could be skipped if we added the appropriate scripts to check for them.

comment:19 in reply to: ↑ 18 Changed 6 months ago by jdemeyer

Replying to embray:

Do we have a ticket somewhere for adding more configure-time checks for system packages? If there is I can't find it.

No, we don't. Feel free to open a ticket. I would prefer one ticket for every package, not a single ticket trying to do too much.

comment:20 Changed 6 months ago by embray

I agree--I probably won't even make a ticket for every package right away but I will make a master ticket for coordinating the task, and then open individual tickets for packages that I think are most worth tackling.

comment:21 Changed 4 months ago by mkoeppe

  • Description modified (diff)

comment:22 follow-up: Changed 2 weeks ago by mkoeppe

Would someone who has followed recent build system changes be interested in updating the description of this meta-ticket?

comment:23 in reply to: ↑ 22 Changed 12 days ago by embray

Replying to mkoeppe:

Would someone who has followed recent build system changes be interested in updating the description of this meta-ticket?

Which build system changes specifically? I have a few open tickets that are making some not insignificant changes, but they don't terribly change things for this ticket. If anything they will help make it easier to implement the goals of this ticket. There is one small conflict I can see: The work I'm doing in #22509 and in #23160 will mostly supersede the work you already did in #21537. This is because the sdh_make_install helper function I added will also handle $SAGE_SUDO.

Right now I'm working toward the goals I outlined here for improving support for building Sage against dependencies from the system. However, I haven't even made tickets for every aspect of that plan yet. All the work I'm currently doing is toward #22509 and #22510 which I see as necessary for saner package management in Sage (they will also be very helpful for work I need to do of making it easier to install optional packages with the Windows installer, but that's otherwise an orthogonal issue).

Last edited 12 days ago by embray (previous) (diff)
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