Subject: Re: how to determine if the os is elf or a.out while building pkg
To: John Refling <>
From: Hubert Feyrer <>
List: tech-pkg
Date: 03/01/2001 04:16:11
On Wed, 28 Feb 2001, John Refling wrote:
> I have software which I'm packaging which wants to read its own symbol
> tables and stuff, so there is a.out code and elf code to do this.  Is
> there a pkg variable which I can test to determine this?

no, but you can test output of "make show-shlib-type". See for
some examples. 

> Also, where can I find out which ports and which versions thereof use
> elf or a.out format?

I don't think there's a table somewhere. 

Some (alpha, ... ?) have always been ELF, some others have always been (so
far :) a.out. from 1.4.3->1.5, i386 and sparc switched from a.out to ELF. 
from 1.5.x to 1.6, some m68k ports (sun3, dunno what else) will switch

Actually, the "ELF" column of
will tell you what -current is about. 

> Finally, how would we distribute binaries for such a beast?  An a.out
> version and elf version for each architecture that ever had an a.out
> or elf format?  Sounds problematic.

Just as we do now for binary pkgs. Seperated in dirs for OS release and
system arch. What else!? X-)

> Is sparc 1.4.3 a.out and 1.5 elf?


 - Hubert

Hubert Feyrer <>