Ask Your Question

Building Sage on legacy macos system 10.5.8

asked 2019-07-31 12:05:22 +0200

dyne2meter gravatar image

updated 2019-08-29 18:58:19 +0200

FrédéricC gravatar image

This isn't a question, yet, depending on replies. It's more of a good-news story (for me, anyway). I'm a hobbyist with legacy mac systems and pretty much a newbie with Sage commands per se, and wanted to use the experience to get a better handle on the structure and behavior of the build system. I just hope this adds to the mac build knowledge base for Sage.

I've just successfully built sage-6.10 (downloaded from the git repository) on a mac book 4,1 system with a Core2Duo processor that does not upgrade MacOS beyond Snow Leopard. The total build time was about 8 hours starting with Xcode 3.2. I had difficulties getting started because all my more modern tools are in my macports installation, and I haven't installed upgrades anywhere else --- or so I thought at first. I hit upon including the path to a previous Sage installation which I did some years ago with a binary download of sage-5.13, adding the path to Sage's local/bin. And it worked!

I had one glitch with the installation of flint-2.5.2, when its makefile died with a request to cp -a which happened after:

mkdir -p "./sage-6.10/local/lib"
mkdir -p "./sage-6.10/local/include/flint"

In my os x shell, there is no cp -a and I substituted cp -pPR by using the debug shell for the build system. Everything else went off without a hitch. What a marvelously robust build system this is, given a finicky set of standard mac build tools! Perhaps I should not find it remarkable that I can still do a build like this with a ten-or-more-year-old computer running a 12-year-old OS.

My question is this: I am having trouble locating solid information about which versions of Sage I should try to build for some particular version of the OS. It it just going to be a matter of dedicated experimentation? If so, my experience here tells me I am ready for that.

edit retag flag offensive close merge delete



Congratulations on building SageMath on this legacy macOS!

slelievre gravatar imageslelievre ( 2019-08-01 17:36:09 +0200 )edit

Thanks for the encouragement! I ended up (not surprisingly) with lots and lots (maybe 100+) of failed doctests, but much usable python code and a pretty high version of maxima (for the 10.5 platform) and many of the other goodies. I'm going to assume that builders on legacy systems should expect the doctesting problems.

dyne2meter gravatar imagedyne2meter ( 2019-08-01 17:55:20 +0200 )edit

A blog post about your experience building Sage on that legacy macOS would be nice.

Did you manage to build any more recent version?

slelievre gravatar imageslelievre ( 2021-03-19 00:04:36 +0200 )edit

1 Answer

Sort by » oldest newest most voted

answered 2021-03-19 00:08:52 +0200

slelievre gravatar image

One can use tar for copying files to overcome the non-portability of some cp options.

See an example at

edit flag offensive delete link more

Your Answer

Please start posting anonymously - your entry will be published after you log in or create a new account.

Add Answer

Question Tools

1 follower


Asked: 2019-07-31 11:57:36 +0200

Seen: 82 times

Last updated: Mar 19