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I am reading a nice article about upgrading php on mac os x mountain lion.

At the Install part of the document the author says that the user must execute a multiple line configure command. What is the easiest way to do it, using mac os terminal? Thank you.

PS : I have executed yesterday the configure command without the parameters. Can this action cause any problems with the re-execution of configure command (with parameters this time)?

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Re-execution of configure wont cause any major changes unless you perform make && sudo make install. You may collect commands/multiple-line commands required & save it to Shell Script and execute it! – Mayura Oct 11 '12 at 14:06
up vote 2 down vote accepted

In Mac OS X the default shell ( calls) is Bash. In this case, you can use the \ character to continue a line if needed. This is shown in the tutorial you link to. Other assistance may be gained from reading about Mac OSX Shell Scripting Basics.

./configure  \
--prefix=/usr  \
--mandir=/usr/share/man  \
--infodir=/usr/share/info  \
--sysconfdir=/private/etc  \


Typically you only need to run the configure command once with your options, then make for subsequent builds. You could put the commands into a script to run, of which you can then just run that one file to execute your commands:


cd /prog/dir

./configure  \
 --prefix=/usr  \
 --mandir=/usr/share/man  \
 --infodir=/usr/share/info  \
 --sysconfdir=/private/etc  \

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The default shell is bash, not tcsh. – slhck Oct 11 '12 at 14:44
@slhck Thanks! I don't have a Mac, so I' can't verify the shell. However, according to what I read from Apple support it states the The default shell (or command-line interface) used in Mac OS X 10.0 through 10.2.8 is tcsh ..., therefore my assumption. – PenguinCoder Oct 11 '12 at 14:46
Well, through 10.2.8 – which was released in 2002. The very same support article mentions bash, which is still correct until now. – slhck Oct 11 '12 at 15:20

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