[Rd] R-Project build system: DESTDIR support

Hin-Tak Leung hin-tak.leung at cimr.cam.ac.uk
Mon Feb 27 12:06:16 CET 2006

Dirk Eddelbuettel wrote:
> Hi Claudio,
> On 25 February 2006 at 03:11, Claudio Fontana wrote:
> | Currently, your project does not support the DESTDIR variable in
> | generated Makefiles (marked as optional in the GNU coding policies, make and
> | automake manual).
> I'm confused. We've been maintaining R in Debian quite merrily even with the
> exisiting standards. To the best of my knowledge things seem to work without

You are both right - R currently does not use DESDIR, and also R seems 
to work without it. What happens is that R is *almost* completely 
re-locatable based on one environment variable R_HOME . There is one
wrapper script (/usr/bin/R) which contains the location of R_HOME,
and it is "massaged" with the intended R_HOME location just before
"make install". The "make install" process essentially just copy
all the files into the intended R_HOME, edit the wrapper script
with the location of R_HOME and copy it also.

Change to DESTDIR should be quite simple. I think it is mostly one
line change in R/Makeconf.in,
        rhome = ${libdir}/R
        rhome = ${DESTDIR}/${libdir}/R
and maybe one or two other places, concerning that wrapper script.
(some volunteers?)


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