source: branches/3.2/mindi-busybox/INSTALL @ 3186

Last change on this file since 3186 was 2725, checked in by Bruno Cornec, 9 years ago
  • Update mindi-busybox to 1.18.3 to avoid problems with the tar command which is now failing on recent versions with busybox 1.7.3
File size: 5.7 KB
4The BusyBox build process is similar to the Linux kernel build:
6  make menuconfig     # This creates a file called ".config"
7  make                # This creates the "busybox" executable
8  make install        # or make CONFIG_PREFIX=/path/from/root install
10The full list of configuration and install options is available by typing:
12  make help
14Quick Start:
17The easy way to try out BusyBox for the first time, without having to install
18it, is to enable all features and then use "standalone shell" mode with a
19blank command $PATH.
21To enable all features, use "make defconfig", which produces the largest
22general-purpose configuration.  It's allyesconfig minus debugging options,
23optional packaging choices, and a few special-purpose features requiring
24extra configuration to use.  Then enable "standalone shell" feature:
26  make defconfig
27  make menuconfig
28  # select Busybox Settings
29  #   then General Configuration
30  #     then exec prefers applets
31  #   exit back to top level menu
32  #   select Shells
33  #     then Standalone shell
34  #   exit back to top level menu
35  # exit and save new configuration
36  #   OR
37  # use these commands to modify .config directly:
40  make
41  PATH= ./busybox ash
43Standalone shell mode causes busybox's built-in command shell to run
44any built-in busybox applets directly, without looking for external
45programs by that name.  Supplying an empty command path (as above) means
46the only commands busybox can find are the built-in ones.
48Note that the standalone shell requires CONFIG_BUSYBOX_EXEC_PATH
49to be set appropriately, depending on whether or not /proc/self/exe is
50available or not. If you do not have /proc, then point that config option
51to the location of your busybox binary, usually /bin/busybox.
53Configuring Busybox:
56Busybox is optimized for size, but enabling the full set of functionality
57still results in a fairly large executable -- more than 1 megabyte when
58statically linked.  To save space, busybox can be configured with only the
59set of applets needed for each environment.  The minimal configuration, with
60all applets disabled, produces a 4k executable.  (It's useless, but very small.)
62The manual configurator "make menuconfig" modifies the existing configuration.
63(For systems without ncurses, try "make config" instead.) The two most
64interesting starting configurations are "make allnoconfig" (to start with
65everything disabled and add just what you need), and "make defconfig" (to
66start with everything enabled and remove what you don't need).  If menuconfig
67is run without an existing configuration, make defconfig will run first to
68create a known starting point.
70Other starting configurations (mostly used for testing purposes) include
71"make allbareconfig" (enables all applets but disables all optional features),
72"make allyesconfig" (enables absolutely everything including debug features),
73and "make randconfig" (produce a random configuration).
75Configuring BusyBox produces a file ".config", which can be saved for future
76use.  Run "make oldconfig" to bring a .config file from an older version of
77busybox up to date.
79Installing Busybox:
82Busybox is a single executable that can behave like many different commands,
83and BusyBox uses the name it was invoked under to determine the desired
84behavior.  (Try "mv busybox ls" and then "./ls -l".)
86Installing busybox consists of creating symlinks (or hardlinks) to the busybox
87binary for each applet enabled in busybox, and making sure these symlinks are
88in the shell's command $PATH.  Running "make install" creates these symlinks,
89or "make install-hardlinks" creates hardlinks instead (useful on systems with
90a limited number of inodes).  This install process uses the file
91"busybox.links" (created by make), which contains the list of enabled applets
92and the path at which to install them.
94Installing links to busybox is not always necessary.  The special applet name
95"busybox" (or with any optional suffix, such as "busybox-static") uses the
96first argument to determine which applet to behave as, for example
97"./busybox cat LICENSE".  (Running the busybox applet with no arguments gives
98a list of all enabled applets.) The standalone shell can also call busybox
99applets without links to busybox under other names in the filesystem.  You can
100also configure a standaone install capability into the busybox base applet,
101and then install such links at runtime with one of "busybox --install" (for
102hardlinks) or "busybox --install -s" (for symlinks).
104If you enabled the busybox shared library feature ( and want
105to run tests without installing, set your LD_LIBRARY_PATH accordingly when
106running the executable:
108  LD_LIBRARY_PATH=`pwd` ./busybox
110Building out-of-tree:
113By default, the BusyBox build puts its temporary files in the source tree.
114Building from a read-only source tree, or building multiple configurations from
115the same source directory, requires the ability to put the temporary files
116somewhere else.
118To build out of tree, cd to an empty directory and configure busybox from there:
120  make KBUILD_SRC=/path/to/source -f /path/to/source/Makefile defconfig
121  make
122  make install
124Alternately, use the O=$BUILDPATH option (with an absolute path) during the
125configuration step, as in:
127  make O=/some/empty/directory allyesconfig
128  cd /some/empty/directory
129  make
130  make CONFIG_PREFIX=. install
132More Information:
135Se also the busybox FAQ, under the questions "How can I get started using
136BusyBox" and "How do I build a BusyBox-based system?"  The BusyBox FAQ is
137available from
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