How to Build Alice on SEAM

Be warned: building Alice yourself is possible, but the process has not been cleaned up properly yet and there are quite a number of dependencies on other tools and libraries.


If you are building on Windows, Gentoo Linux, Mandrake or MacOS X, please also read the notes at the bottom.

Setting up environment

Create a directory to build Alice in, in the following called <base>.

In <base>, retrieve module make from the Alice CVS. See the [WWW] Alice download page for info regarding access to the CVS (follow the instructions there, but get module make instead of alice).

In <base>/make run

make setup

This will download the current versions from the alice, seam and seam-support CVS and builds seam-support.

After that you have to include <base>/seam-support/install/bin in your PATH variable.

Building ALICE

In <base>/make run

make all

This will first build (if wanted) gecode, after that seam, and then alice.

Notes for Windows users

  1. After version 110.55, SML/NJ comes with an building option for Cygwin. So, if you dont have another version installed already, use one >= 110.55

  2. The combination autoconf-2.57, automake-1.7.6, libtool-1.5.20, lightning-1.2 is known to work.

  3. For building the documentation, you need to have PHP installed on your system.

  4. You do not need to have Gtk pre-installed.

Notes for Gentoo Linux users

Unfortunately, Gentoo's autoconf/automake wrapper scripts do not behave as expected: they select the wrong versions. You can fix this by adding WANT_AUTOCONF_2_5=1 and WANT_AUTOMAKE=1.7 to your environment.

Notes for Mandrake Linux users

Mandrake 10 default versions are automake-1.4 and autoconf-2.13. Please install newer versions. The default automake will still be 1.4, because Mandrake uses the "etc/alternatives" management. In order to change the default automake, su as root, and run update-alternatives --config automake and choose the right version (1.7 for instance) at the prompt. For autoconf, like for Gentoo, do export WANT_AUTOCONF_2_5=1.

Unfortunately, the package smlnj-110.0.7-2 to be found in the contrib-packages of Mandrake 10.1 does not work with Alice. Use smlnj-110.0.7-4 instead (see the link at the beginning).

Notes for MacOS X users

Building for MacOS X is still somewhat experimental. You will need all the gtk+-2.0 and libgnomecanvas-2.0 development packages from the fink distribution, as well as an X server installed. SML/NJ is available for MacOS X, but we have experienced problems with versions newer than 110.42.

JIT compilation is currently not supported on the PowerPC architecture. To disable it, you have to

  1. In <base>/seam, make -f Makefile.cvs autotools LIBTOOLIZE=glibtoolize.

  2. For SEAM, give the configure option --disable-lightning.

  3. Alice should build as described above. Please note that there may occur problems when building the Gtk binding.