6.3 Building Mechanisms

6.3.1 Building Ports in Parallel

The FreeBSD ports framework supports parallel building using multiple make sub-processes, which allows SMP systems to utilize all of their available CPU power, allowing port builds to be faster and more effective.

This is achieved by passing -jX flag to make(1) running on vendor code. Unfortunately, not all ports handle parallel building well. Therefore it is required to explicitly enable this feature by adding MAKE_JOBS_SAFE=yes somewhere below the dependency declaration section of the Makefile.

Another option for controlling this feature from the maintainer's point of view is the MAKE_JOBS_UNSAFE=yes variable. It is used when a port is known to be broken with -jX and a user forces the use of multi processor compilations for all ports in /etc/make.conf with the FORCE_MAKE_JOBS=yes variable.

6.3.2 make, gmake, and imake

If your port uses GNU make, set USE_GMAKE=yes.

Table 6-1. Variables for Ports Related to gmake

Variable Means
USE_GMAKE The port requires gmake to build.
GMAKE The full path for gmake if it is not in the PATH.

If your port is an X application that creates Makefile files from Imakefile files using imake, then set USE_IMAKE=yes. This will cause the configure stage to automatically do an xmkmf -a. If the -a flag is a problem for your port, set XMKMF=xmkmf. If the port uses imake but does not understand the install.man target, NO_INSTALL_MANPAGES=yes should be set.

If your port's source Makefile has something else than all as the main build target, set ALL_TARGET accordingly. Same goes for install and INSTALL_TARGET.

6.3.3 configure Script

If your port uses the configure script to generate Makefile files from Makefile.in files, set GNU_CONFIGURE=yes. If you want to give extra arguments to the configure script (the default argument is --prefix=${PREFIX} --infodir=${PREFIX}/${INFO_PATH} --mandir=${MANPREFIX}/man --build=${CONFIGURE_TARGET}), set those extra arguments in CONFIGURE_ARGS. Extra environment variables can be passed using CONFIGURE_ENV variable.

Table 6-2. Variables for Ports That Use configure

Variable Means
GNU_CONFIGURE The port uses configure script to prepare build.
HAS_CONFIGURE Same as GNU_CONFIGURE, except default configure target is not added to CONFIGURE_ARGS.
CONFIGURE_ARGS Additional arguments passed to configure script.
CONFIGURE_ENV Additional environment variables to be set for configure script run.
CONFIGURE_TARGET Override default configure target. Default value is ${MACHINE_ARCH}-portbld-freebsd${OSREL}.

6.3.4 Using scons

If your port uses SCons, define USE_SCONS=yes.

Table 6-3. Variables for Ports That Use scons

Variable Means
SCONS_ARGS Port specific SCons flags passed to the SCons environment.
SCONS_BUILDENV Variables to be set in system environment.
SCONS_ENV Variables to be set in SCons environment.
SCONS_TARGET Last argument passed to SCons, similar to MAKE_TARGET.

To make third party SConstruct respect everything that is passed to SCons in SCONS_ENV (that is, most importantly, CC/CXX/CFLAGS/CXXFLAGS), patch the SConstruct so build Environment is constructed like this:

env = Environment(**ARGUMENTS)

It may be then modified with env.Append and env.Replace.

For questions about the FreeBSD ports system, e-mail <ports@FreeBSD.org>.
For questions about this documentation, e-mail <doc@FreeBSD.org>.