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I disagree with your assertion that DOT_SAGE is the only valid variable listed here. All but one of the listed variables are still valid, most used by either local/bin/sage-env or by src/sage/

  • DOT_SAGE: yes, see both sage-env and
  • SAGE_RC_FILE: yes, see sage-env
  • SAGE_STARTUP_FILE: yes, see both sage-env and
  • SAGE_SERVER: yes, but only used when downloading packages: see build/sage_bootstrap/
  • SAGE_PATH: yes, see sage-env
  • SAGE_BROWSER: yes, see src/misc/; I think it also gets used by the old Sage notebook
  • SAGE_CBLAS: I'm not sure about this one; it may not be valid anymore.

See also for environment variables used when compiling Sage.