Proposed change to ghc installation procedures

Julian Seward (Intl Vendor)
Tue, 20 Mar 2001 03:42:45 -0800

Greetings, GHC users.

If you install GHC from .rpm's, Debian .deb's, InstallShields,
or other package formats, READ NO FURTHER.  The following=20
DOES NOT AFFECT YOU.  The following applies ONLY if you install=20
GHC from binary .tar.gz  files.  (Sparc-solaris users might, for=20

As the GHC 5 release approaches, we're considering changing how
binary builds of GHC are installed.  The main aim of this proposal
is to simplify parts of the GHC build system which have gotten a
bit out of hand and are proving difficult to maintain as a result.

The purpose of this message is to show the proposed changes and
find out if it will cause problems for people.  Up till now, the
installation procedure (eg with 4.08.2) was

   gzip -dc ghc-4.08.2-my-platform-descriptor.tar.gz | tar xvf -
   cd ghc-4.08.2
   ./configure --prefix=3D/where/ghc/should/be/installed
   make install

The proposed new installation scheme is in fact a return to an
old scheme:

   gzip -dc ghc-4.08.2-my-platform-descriptor.tar.gz | tar xvf -
   and then
   edit by hand ghc-4.08.2/bin/my-platform-descriptor/ghc5
   to set the GHC_TOPDIR env variable to point to the top of the
   installation tree.

So you run the distributed image in-place.  The initial edit of the
ghc5 script allows it to know where it is installed. =20

This simplifies our build process; no longer do we need to create
an installation-time Makefile or configure script and all its
supporting junk.  I assume that most users install from .rpms,
so this change only affects package builders and sparc-solaris

Please eeeep ASAP if this will cause you problems; otherwise we
will go ahead with it in in the next couple of days.