I previously mentioned ax_check_mysql.m4 in one of my posts, an m4 macro written for autoconf. So here’s a bit more information about it, and some examples on how to use it.

Introduction #

So ax_check_mysql is essentially an m4 macro for autoconf that was written with MySQL plugin developers in mind. When one runs the macro, a detected MySQL installation will give you the following information:

  • The path to the directory containing the MySQL executables
  • The path to the directory containing MySQL includes (if they exist)
  • The path to the directory where MySQL plugins go
  • The version of MySQL
  • Whether MySQL is 32 or 64 bit

Basically providing most of the information, MySQL-wise, needed to install the plugin.

In the situation where an installation can not be detected or an incomplete one is found, arguments can also be entered manually with:


(where the root directory of the MySQL installation is passed (such as /usr/local/mysql or some other custom directory) and

--with-mysql-command, --with-mysql-plugin, --with-mysql-include

Which would just passing all the directories directly.

Examples #

One can include the macro in the same fashion as any other macro in the configure.ac file:


Now if I run this script on a computer with MySQL installed, you should something along the lines of:

autoconf && ./configure
checking for gcc... gcc
checking whether the C compiler works... yes
checking for C compiler default output file name... a.out
checking for suffix of executables...
checking whether we are cross compiling... no
checking for suffix of object files... o
checking whether we are using the GNU C compiler... yes
checking whether gcc accepts -g... yes
checking for gcc option to accept ISO C89... none needed
checking how to run the C preprocessor... gcc -E
checking for grep that handles long lines and -e... /bin/grep
checking for egrep... /bin/grep -E
checking for ANSI C header files... yes
checking for sys/types.h... yes
checking for sys/stat.h... yes
checking for stdlib.h... yes
checking for string.h... yes
checking for memory.h... yes
checking for strings.h... yes
checking for inttypes.h... yes
checking for stdint.h... yes
checking for unistd.h... yes
Testing if MySQL was installed to common source/binary directory
checking for mysql... no
Testing if MySQL was installed to common package manager directory
checking for mysql... yes
checking /usr/include/mysql/mysql_version.h/mysql_version.h usability... no
checking /usr/include/mysql/mysql_version.h/mysql_version.h presence...no
checking for /usr/include/mysql/mysql_version.h/mysql_version.h... no
checking /usr/include/mysql_version.h/mysql_version.h usability... no
checking /usr/include/mysql_version.h/mysql_version.h presence... no
checking for /usr/include/mysql_version.h/mysql_version.h... no
checking if /usr/lib/mysql/plugin/ exists...... yes
checking for mysql... /usr/bin/configure: WARNING: A package install was detected, but the include directory could not be found! MySQL development library may not be installed. If development library is installed please use --with-mysql-include --with-mysql-plugin --with-mysql-command to manually assign directory locations
checking MySQL Architecture... 32
checking MySQL Version... 5.1.41
checking if MySQL install supports Plugins... yes
checking if MySQL version is equal or greater than 5.0... yes
configure: yes
configure: /usr/bin/

Note that the last two lines of output were echoing the MYSQL and MYSQL_COMMAND variables respectively, and that I do not have the development library installed. A full list of variables available are listed in the documentation.

One can pass four arguments when running the macro:

MYSQL-PLUGIN-NEEDED: if the MySQL version doesn’t support plugins (< 5.1), this will cause failure.

MYSQL-REQUIRED: say if MySQL is required or not.

MINIMUM-VERSION: minimum version required for MySQL (i.e. 5.0 or 5.5)

INCLUDES-REQUIRED: whether the MySQL includes are required (will fail if includes are not found)

For example, If I wanted MySQL 5.5 or higher, I could enter:


And as my MySQL installation is 5.1.41, ./configure will fail:

checking MySQL Architecture... 32
checking MySQL Version... 5.1.41
checking if MySQL install supports Plugins... yes
checking if MySQL version is equal or greater than 5.5... no
configure: error: installed MySQL version is not above 5.5. Please upgrade your version of MySQL

Entering nothing in the version field will allow any version.

Warnings will be outputted instead of errors if components aren’t required (such as includes or MySQL itself).

The script is maintained by myself on github: