This page describes binary archives in MacPorts

What are binary archives?

Binary archives allow MacPorts utilities to begin installation after the destroot phase and install and activate a port on the target system

(MacPorts guide)

Using binary archives one doesn't have to compile the port oneself: it can be downloaded from the internet.

Where do I get them?

Build bots are part of the MacPorts infrastructure and automatically build all ports for a combination of OS versions and architectures. Binary archives built from them are automatically available to you. You have nothing to do to get them.

For instance, here are the archives built for the 2Pong port: . As the time of writing there are archives for the 1.0.1a_0 version of 2Pong for Snow Leopard (Mac OS X 10.6.x, Darwin 10), Lion (Mac OS X 10.7.x, Darwin 11), Mountain Lion (Mac OS X 10.8.x, Darwin 12), Mavericks (Mac OS X 10.9.x, Darwin 13), all x86_64.

You can set up your own binary archives server, see archives.

How to enable binary archives?

set it globally by editing ${prefix}/etc/macports.conf

# When MacPorts should build ports from source.
# - ifneeded: Download binary archives if available; build from source
#   otherwise.
# - always: Always build from source; never try fetching archives.
# - never: Never build from source; try fetching archives and abort if
#   unavailable.

So you'll want:

buildfromsource     	ifneeded

or (but then you'll get an error if you try to install a port at a version or with variants not available in the archives):

buildfromsource     	never

specify it on the command line

sudo port -b install ...

How to disable binary archives?

disable it globally by editing ${prefix}/etc/macports.conf

buildfromsource     	always

specify it on the command line

sudo port -s install ...

What prevents MacPorts from using binary archives?

You cannot use the standard binary archives if MacPorts is installed to a non default location.

If you use "port -b install ..." you'll get the error message "Binary-only mode requested with no usable archive sites configured".

You cannot use the standard binary archives for a non standard combination of variants.

Archives must exist for your version of the OS and architecture (check to see if it's available).

How to use your own archives

See archives.

Last modified 7 years ago Last modified on May 14, 2014, 9:38:36 PM