5.8. Dealing with Broken Ports

When coming across a port that does not build or install:

  1. Find out if there is a fix pending for the port in the Problem Report database. If so, the proposed fix may work.

  2. Ask the maintainer of the port for help. Type make maintainer or read the Makefile to find the maintainer's email address. Remember to include the name and version of the port (send the $FreeBSD: line from the Makefile) and the output leading up to the error when you email the maintainer.


    Some ports are not maintained by an individual but instead by a mailing list. Many, but not all, of these addresses look like . Please take this into account when phrasing your questions.

    In particular, ports shown as maintained by are actually not maintained by anyone. Fixes and support, if any, come from the general community who subscribe to that mailing list. More volunteers are always needed!

    If you do not get a response, use send-pr(1) to submit a bug report (see Writing FreeBSD Problem Reports).

  3. Fix it! The Porter's Handbook includes detailed information on the Ports infrastructure so that you can fix the occasional broken port or even submit your own!

  4. Use pkg_add(1) to instead install the package.

All FreeBSD documents are available for download at http://ftp.FreeBSD.org/pub/FreeBSD/doc/

Questions that are not answered by the documentation may be sent to <freebsd-questions@FreeBSD.org>.

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