set and determine the architecture for package building
see also :
add an example, a script, a trick and tips
dpkg-buildpackage accepts the -a option and passes
it to dpkg-architecture. Other examples:
CC=i386-gnu-gcc dpkg-architecture -c debian/rules build
eval `dpkg-architecture -u`
Check if an architecture is equal to the current architecture or
a given one:
dpkg-architecture -amips -elinux-mips
Check if the current architecture or an architecture provided
with -a are Linux systems:
dpkg-architecture -ai386 -ilinux-any
DEB_HOST_GNU_TYPE = $(shell
DEB_BUILD_GNU_TYPE = $(shell
DEB_HOST_GNU_TYPE ?= $(shell dpkg-architecture
DEB_BUILD_GNU_TYPE ?= $(shell dpkg-architecture
DEB_BUILD_ARCH ?= $(shell dpkg-architecture
DEB_HOST_ARCH ?= $(shell dpkg-architecture
does provide a facility to determine and set the build and
host architecture for package building.
architecture is always determined by an external call to
dpkg(1), and can not be set at the command line.
You can specify
the host architecture by providing one or both of the
options -a and -t. The default is
determined by an external call to gcc(1), or the same
as the build architecture if CC or gcc are
both not available. One out of -a and
-t is sufficient, the value of the other will
be set to a usable default. Indeed, it is often better to
only specify one, because dpkg-architecture
will warn you if your choice does not match the default.
Set the Debian
Set the GNU system type.
Values set by existing environment variables with the
same name as used by the scripts are honored (i.e. used by
dpkg-architecture), except if this force flag
is present. This allows the user to override a value even
when the call to dpkg-architecture is buried in
some other script (for example
The /usr/share/dpkg/architecture.mk Makefile snippet is provided
by dpkg-dev since version 1.16.1.
The DEB_*_ARCH_BITS and DEB_*_ARCH_ENDIAN variables were
introduced in dpkg-dev 1.15.4. Using them in debian/rules
thus requires a build-dependency on dpkg-dev (>= 1.15.4).
The DEB_HOST_ARCH_CPU and DEB_HOST_ARCH_OS variables were
introduced in dpkg-dev 1.13.2.
The -e and -i options were only introduced in
relatively recent versions of dpkg-architecture (since
Print the environment variables, one each line, in the format
VARIABLE=value. This is the default action.
Check for equality of architecture. By default
debian-architecture is compared against the current Debian
architecture, being the host. This action will not expand the
architecture wildcards. Command finishes with an exit status of 0
if matched, 1 if not matched.
Check for identity of architecture by expanding
architecture-wildcard as an architecture wildcard and
comparing against the current Debian architecture. Command
finishes with an exit status of 0 if matched, 1 if not matched.
Print the value of a single variable.
Print an export command. This can be used to set the environment
variables using eval.
Print a similar command to -s but to unset all variables.
Execute a command in an environment which has all
variables set to the determined value.
Print a list of valid architecture names.
Show the usage message and exit.
Show the version and exit.
The environment variables set by dpkg-architecture are
passed to debian/rules as make variables (see make
documentation). However, you should not rely on them, as this
breaks manual invocation of the script. Instead, you should
always initialize them using dpkg-architecture with the -q
option. Here are some examples, which also show how you can
improve the cross compilation support in your package:
Retrieving the GNU system type and forwarding it to ./configure:
DEB_BUILD_GNU_TYPE := $(shell dpkg-architecture
DEB_HOST_GNU_TYPE := $(shell dpkg-architecture
configure --build=$( DEB_BUILD_GNU_TYPE )
--host=$( DEB_HOST_GNU_TYPE )
Doing something only for a specific architecture:
DEB_HOST_ARCH := $(shell dpkg-architecture
ifeq ($( DEB_HOST_ARCH ),alpha)
or if you only need to check the CPU or OS type, use the
DEB_HOST_ARCH_CPU or DEB_HOST_ARCH_OS variables.
Note that you can also rely on an external Makefile snippet to
properly set all the variables that dpkg-architecture can
ifeq ($( DEB_HOST_ARCH ),alpha)
In any case, you should never use dpkg
--print-architecture to get architecture information during a
All these files have to be present for dpkg-architecture
to work. Their location can be overridden at runtime with the
environment variable DPKG_DATADIR.
Table of known CPU names and mapping to their GNU name.
Table of known operating system names and mapping to their GNU
Mapping between Debian architecture triplets and Debian
The machine the package is built on.
The machine the package is built for.
The Debian architecture string, which specifies the binary tree
in the FTP archive. Examples: i386, sparc,
An architecture wildcard is a special architecture string that
will match any real architecture being part of it. The general
form is <kernel>-<cpu>. Examples: linux-any,
GNU system type
An architecture specification string consisting of two parts
separated by a dash: cpu and system. Examples: i386-linux-gnu,
sparc-linux-gnu, i386-gnu, x86_64-netbsd.
The following variables are set by dpkg-architecture:
The Debian architecture of the build machine.
The Debian system name of the build machine.
The Debian cpu name of the build machine.
The pointer size of the build machine (in bits).
The endianness of the build machine (little / big).
The CPU part of DEB_BUILD_GNU_TYPE
The System part of DEB_BUILD_GNU_TYPE .
The GNU system type of the build machine.
The clarified GNU system type of the build
machine, used for filesystem paths.
The Debian architecture of the host machine.
The Debian system name of the host machine.
The Debian cpu name of the host machine.
The pointer size of the host machine (in bits).
The endianness of the host machine (little / big).
The CPU part of DEB_HOST_GNU_TYPE .
The System part of DEB_HOST_GNU_TYPE .
The GNU system type of the host machine.
The clarified GNU system type of the host machine,
used for filesystem paths.