First, please be aware that the GNU project (that's us!) provide Free
Software but we generally only provide the source code. It's great if
some others out there choose to compile and distribute pre-compiled
versions of our software, but issues with those binary versions are
often best requested from there, instead of us. This is not because we
don't want to help, but because we're not familiar with these packages,
how they're put together, or how they work.
Of course if you have a C compiler (such as Visual Studio) you can
always compile GNU make yourself rather than using downloaded packages.
Second, when requesting help it's always a good idea to provide the
exact command you typed, and the exact error message you got, cut and
pasted from your command line, rather than paraphrasing. Even small
changes of phrasing, etc. can mean the difference between knowing what
the problem is and having no idea.
Based on your message, I'm going to assume that in order to run GNU
make you typed the command "GNU make", as in something like:
C:> "GNU make"
That isn't correct; GNU make is the name of the project but it's not
the name of the program. As mentioned above, we can't know exactly
what the name of the program is because different people build it
differently. But, it will probably be named gnumake.exe, gmake.exe, or
make.exe, or some version of that. So you'd type:
or whatever. Also, of course you need to be sure that the directory
containing the program is on your %Path% variable (or else us a fully-
Hi Sarah; I've added back the mailing list. In general I prefer to
always CC the list because it ensures that other people who are looking
for answers might be able to find them in the archive. Hope that's OK!
On Fri, 2020-07-31 at 12:41 -0600, Sarah Toth wrote:
> Yeah i initially installed it with a binary but then went back; i do
> have visual studio installed as well as the required BuildTools. But
> the instructions for this method aren't clear to me;
> From the docs:
> "Downloading Make
> Make can be found on the main GNU ftp server:
> http://ftp.gnu.org/gnu/make/ (via HTTP) and
> ftp://ftp.gnu.org/gnu/make/ (via FTP). It can also be found on
> the GNU mirrors; please use a mirror if possible."
This means, _the source code_ for GNU make can be found in those
locations. They will be provided as tar.gz files so you will need a
way to unpack those files (if you have Git for Windows or similar
installed it will have a tar program that can unpack it). I guess it
would be nice if we provided the source as a zip file as well.
Once you download the source file and unpack it, you will find a
directory such as "make-4.3". Inside this directory will be a file
such as README.W32 which will describe how to compile your own version
of GNU make using Visual Studio.
I'm not necessarily suggesting that you shouldn't use pre-built
binaries. I only suggest that if you do so you will probably need to
request help from whomever is producing those binaries, rather than
from the GNU project.
> I grabbed make-3.81.exe from this server link (
> http://ftp.gnu.org/gnu/make/) - can you clarify that this isn't a
> pre-compiled version? If so how do i compile it via visual studio?
Sorry, but I cannot find any .exe file at that location, so I can't say
anything about the exe you found:
On 2020-07-31 08:45, Sarah Toth wrote:
> Hi there,
> I'm trying to install GNU Make on my windows OS because it is a
> dependency of elevation 1.0.6 <https://pypi.org/project/elevation/>.
This project assumes a Unix (possibly even Linux). Look at this
on their main page:
"GNU make, curl and unzip come pre-installed with most operating
Obviously, these developers, or whoever they put in charge of writing
content of the project page, are not familiar with proprietary Unix
like Solaris or AIX, yet are making a confident statement about "most
Say, are all three programs *pre-installed* on a vanilla install of Mac
By "most operating systems", they probably "most distributions of
You know, Debian, Ubuntu, Fedora, ...
So based on that, I would brace myself for a cross-platform experience
involves a lot of DIY.
> Currently I have GnuWin32
> installed here
> However, i still get a "'GNU Make' not found or not usable." error. Any
> ideas on what to do?
Since the elevation project seems to assume a Linux environment, your
best bet will be to use Cygwin, whose explicit goal it is to create a
Linux-like environment on Microsoft Windows. Or else, perhaps try
Microsoft's WSL: Windows Subsystem for Linux. That requires Windows 10
or Server 2019.
Or else, contact the elevation project to ask them whether any of the
maintainers, or any users, are working on Windows, and can they share
the details of their setup. That could be a major shortcut toward