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Re: Comments on the Mac installation instructions on the wiki

From: Paul Kienzle
Subject: Re: Comments on the Mac installation instructions on the wiki
Date: Sun, 8 Apr 2007 16:29:25 -0400

On Apr 8, 2007, at 3:21 PM, Marius Schamschula wrote:


On Apr 8, 2007, at 1:59 PM, Paul Kienzle wrote:

On Apr 8, 2007, at 11:40 AM, Marius Schamschula wrote:


On Apr 8, 2007, at 10:11 AM, Paul Kienzle wrote:
You could also build octave as an app.
I've looked at this approach in the past. This has been done for Gimp and several other open source packages. The problem is the Voodoo associated with the DYLD_LIBRARY_PATH. Setting the environmental variable can cause problems. To build a self contained app, you have to manually change the internal paths after building such that everything is on a relative path (dylibs are on absolute paths by default, run otool -L against a dylib). The library names change every time a package is updated, so this is very difficult to automate. Frankly, I hate messing with it, just as much as Frameworks get in the way to a point where I'd rather rebuild a library than build against a Framework installed by the OS. I gave up on the app approach since I have things working in the classical *NIX style on the command line.

DYLD_LIBRARY_PATH worked for me when I tried it three years ago.
I didn't say it doesn't work. However, you got to be very careful, otherwise you can break any and all applications (i.e. something akin to rm when used as -Rf from root - fortunately you can undo this). I vaguely remember setting DYLD_LIBRARY_PATH for a particular package, which worked, but most everything else didn't. Setting DYLD_LIBRARY_PATH is a kludge, it should not be needed.

The environment variable will only affect the current shell. By putting it in a script you restrict it so it won't break the rest of the system. The only danger I can see is when the user runs a shell command from octave since it inherits the octave environment, but we should be able to remove DYLD_LIBRARY_PATH from the environment once octave is running, so even that danger is minimal. Since all of this is happening inside an app, most users won't notice anything is being done.

        - Paul

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