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On this page you find all important commands for the CLI tool autoconf. If the command you are looking for is missing please ask our AI.


Autoconf is a command line tool for generating shell scripts that automatically configure source code packages to adapt to different Unix-like systems. It is primarily used in the process of building and installing software on these systems.

Autoconf simplifies the configuration process for software developers by allowing them to write a single script that checks for system dependencies, sets up variable assignments, and performs other necessary tasks to ensure a successful build and installation. This script is called a "configure script," and it is generated by Autoconf based on a set of rules defined by the software developer.

The main purpose of Autoconf is to abstract the differences between various Unix-like systems and provide a standardized way of configuring software. It achieves this by using a series of checks, tests, and macros to determine the characteristics of the target system. These checks can include detecting the presence of libraries, headers, language features, system utilities, and other dependencies required by the software.

Autoconf supports a variety of programming languages, including C, C++, Fortran, and more. It also integrates with other tools, such as Automake, to provide a comprehensive build system for complex software projects.

Using Autoconf involves the following steps:

  1. Writing a file, which contains the rules and checks needed to configure the software.
  2. Running the autoconf command on the file to generate the configure script.
  3. Users then run the configure script on their system, which performs the necessary checks and generates a Makefile tailored to the system.
  4. Finally, users can run the make command to build and install the software based on the generated Makefile.

Overall, Autoconf simplifies the process of configuring software for different Unix-like systems, providing a portable and adaptable solution for developers and users alike.

List of commands for autoconf:

  • autoconf:tldr:1a56b autoconf: Generate a configuration script from `` (if present) or `` and save this script to `configure`.
    $ autoconf
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  • autoconf:tldr:664d5 autoconf: Generate a configuration script from the specified template; output to `stdout`.
    $ autoconf ${template-file}
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  • autoconf:tldr:ae708 autoconf: Generate a configuration script from the specified template (even if the input file has not changed) and write the output to a file.
    $ autoconf --force --output=${outfile} ${template-file}
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tool overview