[Rubygems-developers] Fwd: rubygems user install of extensions

Dimitri Aivaliotis aglarond at gmail.com
Thu Sep 28 02:48:45 EDT 2006

Sorry for the cross-post, but I didn't get any response on ruby-talk.

- Dimitri

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Dimitri Aivaliotis <aglarond at gmail.com>
Date: Sep 25, 2006 4:44 PM
Subject: rubygems user install of extensions
To: ruby-talk ML <ruby-talk at ruby-lang.org>


My problem is that I am trying to run a gems installation as a non-root
user, and this doesn't work out-of-the-box for any gems that include the
building of extensions with mkmf.  For each gem (example: mongrel), I need
to add the following lines to extconf.rb:

require 'etc'
user = ENV['USER']
group = Etc.getpwnam(user).gid

module Config
  MAKEFILE_CONFIG["INSTALL"] = "/usr/bin/install -c -o #{user} -g #{group}"

and regenerate the gem.

I was wondering if anyone else ran into a similar problem when installing a
gem that included extensions?  Do you have other solutions?  Is there any
way of specifying MAKEFILE_CONFIG["INSTALL"] in .gemrc, for example?

This happens with both 0.8.11 and svn trunk of rubygems (I applied Tilman
Sauerbeck's patch from
, to solve an unrelated problem).

(This is obviously on UNIX, FreeBSD in my case; I don't know if something
similar would have to be done for Windows.)

Thanks for taking the time.

- Dimitri
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