E2fsprogs --with-root-prefix

Sergey Ostrovsky sostrovsky at snip.net
Thu Nov 23 16:33:18 PST 2000

Matthias Benkmann wrote:

> What's the purpose of --with-root-prefix=  in the E2fsprogs installation?
> Which programs' install locations are changed and what's wrong with
> installing them in /usr?

Nothing is wrong, actually. --prefix and --with-root-prefix are just about
different things.
This --with-root-prefix=<really nothing> is the default value for e2fsprogs
when installing
on the same root you're running.
--prefix is the so called "default prefix" for autoconf. Whole bunch of
subordinate directories
get assigned default values on the basis of --prefix. For instance, default
value for datadir is $(prefix)/share.
People often have their executables installed in /usr/bin or /usr/local/bin.

This is because prefix=/usr or prefix=/usr/local/bin was used when
configuring the package.
So far, so good.
What about configuring some stuff you want to have in /bin or /sbin in
addition to things you planned
to see below /usr ? Autoconf doesn't have predefined facilities just for
It does have bindir and sbindir, but these are just two variables, and we
now need four:
bin_just_off_the_root, sbin_just_off_the_root, bin_under_user,
Mr. Tso gives us facility to change the relative location of /bin and /sbin,
so we could
install his stuff on the temporarily mounted partition, which might be used
as a root partition later.
( primary case of meaningful usage ).
So, if you mounted your new Linux system you're building as /mnt/Xyzzy,
and configured --with-root-prefix=/mnt/Xyzzy, the things ( including these
in /bin and /sbin )
will be installed in the right place.

Sergey Ostrovsky.

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