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7.4 Configuring and creating the Makefile

The first thing to do is carefully read the README and INSTALL text files (use the less command). These contain important information on how to compile and run the software.

The units package uses the GNU configure system to compile the source code. We will need to specify the installation directory, since the default will be the main system area which you will not have write permissions for. We need to create an install directory in your home directory.

% mkdir ~/units174

Then run the configure utility setting the installation path to this.

% ./configure --prefix=$HOME/units174

NOTE: The $HOME variable is an example of an environment variable. The value of $HOME is the path to your home directory. Just type

% echo $HOME

to show the contents of this variable. We will learn more about environment variables in a later chapter.

If configure has run correctly, it will have created a Makefile with all necessary options. You can view the Makefile if you wish (use the less command), but do not edit the contents of this.

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