Trevis Rothwell's weblog

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GNU Guile on OS X via MacPorts

22 March 2015

Despite having good success building other GNU packages, I have tried unsuccessfully for years to compile GNU Guile v2 for Mac OS X. Perhaps just as well, since OS X is proprietary software, but nevertheless, I wanted to get it running.

One blogger has written extensively about building Guile v2 on OS X, and following those directions helped move me along quite a bit. But ultimately I gave up when the compilation process failed to find GNU Readline, because the LLVM clang C compiler on OS X (masquerading as the GNU C compiler) was using some pseudo-Readline library provided by OS X instead of the real GNU Readline library. This problem, too, may well be surmountable, but I had had enough.

I installed MacPorts and ran its installation utility to get GNU Guile 2.0.11. MacPorts chugged away for a while; I went out to dinner, and when I came back, Guile 2.0.11 was installed on the OS X system. Hooray!

Delighted, I headed back to the MacPorts website to donate money to their project; after all, I had surely burnt up hours of my own time fiddling with this, to no avail, and MacPorts solved the problem for me while I was eating vegetable stir fry. Alas, I could find no link on the site for making donations, so I will just publicly recommend them instead.

If you run into a similar problem, try using MacPorts — preferably sooner than I did!