Autoconf is an extensible package of m4 macros that produce shell scripts to automatically configure software source code packages. These scripts can adapt the packages to many kinds of UNIX-like systems without manual user intervention. Autoconf creates a configuration script for a package from a template file that lists the operating system features that the package can use, in the form of m4 macro calls.
Producing configuration scripts using Autoconf requires GNU m4. You should install GNU m4 (version 1.4.5 or later) before configuring Autoconf, so that Autoconf's configure script can find it. The configuration scripts produced by Autoconf are self-contained, so their users do not need to have Autoconf (or GNU m4).
The manual is available online.
GNU Autoconf releases can be found on http://ftp.gnu.org/gnu/autoconf/ or one of the mirrors. You can also order a CD-ROM from the FSF or use other methods to obtain a copy.
Third party macros can be downloaded from The GNU Autoconf Macro Archive.
Alpha/beta releases of Autoconf can be found in ftp://alpha.gnu.org/pub/gnu/autoconf/, and the latest in-development sources for Autoconf can always be fetched through CVS from Savannah. DO NOT use Autoconf sources from these locations for production use.
Autoconf has several moderated mailing lists, each with an archive.
For general Autoconf discussions, use email@example.com.
Email bug reports to firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you have found a bug in Autoconf that hasn't yet been fixed in the latest CVS sources of Autoconf, please send a patch (made for the CVS sources, not the release sources) to email@example.com.
Autoconf is often used together with the following software systems:
Please send FSF & GNU inquiries & questions to firstname.lastname@example.org. There are also other ways to contact the FSF.
Please send comments on this particular web page to email@example.com, send comments about www.gnu.org web pages in general to firstname.lastname@example.org, and send other questions to email@example.com.
Copyright © 1998, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006 Free Software Foundation, Inc., 51 Franklin St, Fifth Floor, Boston, MA 02110-1301 USA
Verbatim copying and distribution of this entire article is permitted in any medium, provided this notice is preserved.
Updated: $Id: autoconf.html,v 1.21 2006/07/17 16:34:13 eggert Exp $