Installing Emacs from source

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1 Log

1.1 [2021-03-21 Sun]

I want to upgrade to Emacs 27. I'm currently on 26.3 on Mint.

I could get it from a PPA, but a couple suggestions here suggest that building it from source is fairly quick and straightforward. And possibly Emacs runs quicker if built for your own machine. So I might do that.

  git clone --depth=1 --single-branch 
--branch emacs-27 https://github.com/emacs-mirror/emacs.git

cd emacs/

sudo apt install -y autoconf make gcc texinfo libgtk-3-dev libxpm-dev \
     libjpeg-dev libgif-dev libtiff5-dev libgnutls28-dev libncurses5-dev \
     libjansson-dev libharfbuzz-dev libharfbuzz-bin

./autogen.sh

./configure --with-json --with-modules --with-harfbuzz --with-compress-install \
            --with-threads --with-included-regex --with-x-toolkit=lucid --with-zlib --without-sound \
            --without-xpm --with-jpeg --without-tiff --without-gif --with-png \
            --without-rsvg --with-imagemagick  --without-toolkit-scroll-bars \
            --without-gpm --without-dbus --without-makeinfo --without-pop \
            --without-mailutils --without-gsettings --without-pop
make
sudo make install

1.2 [2021-03-27 Sat]

When compiling, you need to set compiler flags. So I kind of want to know what the current version I'm using was compiled with, so I can reuse those again.

You can get this by inspecting system-configuration-options (info here).

For me it was

"–build=x8664-linux-gnu –prefix=/usr '–includedir=\({prefix}/include' '--mandir=\){prefix}/share/man' '–infodir=\({prefix}/share/info' --sysconfdir=/etc --localstatedir=/var --disable-silent-rules '--libdir=\){prefix}/lib/x8664-linux-gnu' '–libexecdir=${prefix}/lib/x8664-linux-gnu' –disable-maintainer-mode –disable-dependency-tracking –prefix=/usr –sharedstatedir=/var/lib –program-suffix=26 –with-modules –with-file-notification=inotify –with-mailutils –with-x=yes –with-x-toolkit=gtk3 –with-xwidgets –with-lcms2 'CFLAGS=-g -O2 -fdebug-prefix-map=/build/emacs26-TP6iDo/emacs26-26.3~1.git96dd019=. -fstack-protector-strong -Wformat -Werror=format-security -no-pie' 'CPPFLAGS=-Wdate-time -DFORTIFYSOURCE=2' 'LDFLAGS=-Wl,-Bsymbolic-functions -Wl,-z,relro -no-pie'"

All of that looks fine, although -fdebug-prefix-map is pointing at an emacs26 specific directory. I notice also that the recommended one from reddit has –with-harfbuzz, which I think is new for 27.

Someone else recommends the following config options:

./configure --with-sound=alsa --without-gconf --with-mailutils --with-json --with-modules --prefix=/usr/local

don't skip the json and modules flags […] . If you do, you'll be wondering why LSP is slow as balls and why vterm doesn't work.

Bit of a faff, really, figuring out which configuration flags are needed. I wonder what they all mean. And presumably there are some defaults if you don't select them all?

This article has a wealth of info here: What's New in Emacs 27.1? - Mastering Emacs. It gives some info as to what is default and what isn't.

I think I'll just keep it simple and see what happens. There's a part of me that thinks I should just get it from the PPA - that would definitely be simpler - but I think I'll enjoy compiling it from source. Takes me back to the early days of my Linux usage.

"
'--includedir=${prefix}/include' 
'--mandir=${prefix}/share/man' 
'--infodir=${prefix}/share/info' --sysconfdir=/etc 
--localstatedir=/var --disable-silent-rules 
'--libdir=${prefix}/lib/x86_64-linux-gnu' 
'--libexecdir=${prefix}/lib/x86_64-linux-gnu' 
--disable-maintainer-mode 
--disable-dependency-tracking --prefix=/usr 
--sharedstatedir=/var/lib
--with-file-notification=inotify 
--with-mailutils 
--with-x=yes 
--with-x-toolkit=gtk3 
--with-xwidgets
"

configure: error: xwidgets requested but WebKitGTK+ not found.

OK, installed libwebkit2gtk-4.0-dev.

configure: WARNING: unrecognized options: –disable-maintainer-mode, –disable-dependency-tracking

OK, removed them from the config.

1.3 [2021-03-27 Sat]

OK! All seemed to compile fine and startup with no problems. Packages were all pulled in.

On 27, had to change the time-stamp-format.

The following obsolescent time-stamp-format construct(s) were found:

"%04y" – use %Y

Fair enough.

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