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This is Mono.
1. Installation
2. Using Mono
3. Directory Roadmap
1. Compilation and Installation
a. Build Requirements
To build Mono, you will need the following components:
* pkg-config
Available from:
* glib 2.4
Available from:
On Itanium, you must obtain libunwind:
On Solaris, make sure that you used GNU tar to unpack this package, as
Solaris tar will not unpack this correctly, and you will get strange errors.
On Solaris, make sure that you use the GNU toolchain to build the software.
Optional dependencies:
* libgdiplus
If you want to get support for System.Drawing, you will need to get
* libzlib
This library and the development headers are required for compression
file support in the 2.0 profile.
b. Building the Software
If you obtained this package as an officially released tarball,
this is very simple, use configure and make:
./configure --prefix=/usr/local
make install
Mono supports a JIT engine on x86, SPARC, SPARCv9, S/390, AMD64, ARM
and PowerPC systems.
If you obtained this as a snapshot, you will need an existing
Mono installation. To upgrade your installation, unpack both
mono and mcs:
tar xzf mcs-XXXX.tar.gz
tar xzf mono-XXXX.tar.gz
mv mono-XXX mono
mv mcs-XXX mcs
cd mono
./ --prefix=/usr/local
c. Building the software from SVN
If you are building the software from SVN, make sure that you
have up-to-date mcs and mono sources:
svn co svn+ssh://
svn co svn+ssh://
Then, go into the mono directory, and configure:
cd mono
./ --prefix=/usr/local
This will automatically go into the mcs/ tree and build the
binaries there.
This assumes that you have a working mono installation, and that
there's a C# compiler named 'mcs', and a corresponding IL
runtime called 'mono'. You can use two make variables
EXTERNAL_MCS and EXTERNAL_RUNTIME to override these. e.g., you
can say
make EXTERNAL_MCS=/foo/bar/mcs EXTERNAL_RUNTIME=/somewhere/else/mono
If you don't have a working Mono installation
If you don't have a working Mono installation, an obvious choice
is to install the latest released packages of 'mono' for your
distribution and running; make; make install in the
mono module directory.
You can also try a slightly more risky approach: this may not work,
so start from the released tarball as detailed above.
This works by first getting the latest version of the 'monolite'
distribution, which contains just enough to run the 'mcs'
compiler. You do this with:
make get-monolite-latest
This will download and automatically gunzip and untar the
tarball, and place the files appropriately so that you can then
just run:
To ensure that you're using the 'monolite' distribution, you can
also try passing EXTERNAL_MCS=false on the make command-line.
Testing and Installation
You can run (part of) the mono and mcs testsuites with the command:
make check
All tests should pass.
If you want more extensive tests, including those that test the
class libraries, you need to re-run 'configure' with the
'--enable-nunit-tests' flag, and try
make -k check
Expect to find a few testsuite failures. As a sanity check, you
can compare the failures you got with
You can now install mono with:
make install
Failure to follow these steps may result in a broken installation.
d. Common Configuration Options
The following are the configuration options that someone
building Mono might want to use:
--with-gc=[boehm, included, sgen, none]
Selects the garbage collector engine to use, the
default is the "included" value.
This is the default value, and its
the most feature complete, it will allow Mono
to use typed allocations and support the
It is essentially a slightly modified Boehm GC
This is used to use a system-install Boehm GC,
it is useful to test new features available in
Boehm GC, but we do not recommend that people
use this, as it disables a few features.
The under-development Generational GC for
Mono, do not use this in production.
Disables the inclusion of a garbage
Controls how Mono should access thread local storage,
pthread forces Mono to use the pthread APIs, while
__thread uses compiler-optimized access to it.
Although __thread is faster, it requires support from
the compiler, kernel and libc. Old Linux systems do
not support with __thread.
This value is typically pre-configured and there is no
need to set it, unless you are trying to debug a
This controls whether Mono will install a special
signal handler to handle stack overflows. If set to
"yes", it will turn stack overflows into the
StackOverflowException. Otherwise when a stack
overflow happens, your program will receive a
segmentation fault.
The configure script will try to detect if your
operating system supports this. Some older Linux
systems do not support this feature, or you might want
to override the auto-detection.
This controls whether `mono' should link against a
static library (libmono.a) or a shared library
This defaults to yes, and will improve the performance
of the `mono' program.
This only affects the `mono' binary, the shared
library will always be produced for
developers that want to embed the runtime in their
The default value for this is `yes', and it makes Mono
generate code which might be slightly slower on
average systems, but the resulting executable will run
faster under the Xen virtualization system.
Enable support for GC heaps larger than 3GB.
This value is set to `no' by default.
Controls whether the IKVM JNI interface library is
built or not. This is used if you are planning on
using the IKVM Java Virtual machine with Mono.
This defaults to `yes'.
Whether you want to build libraries that are still not
completed (The 2.0 APIs). It defaults to `yes'.
This is used to configure where should Mono look for
libgdiplus when running the System.Drawing tests.
It defaults to `installed', which means that the
library is available to Mono through the regular
system setup.
`sibling' can be used to specify that a libgdiplus
that resides as a sibling of this directory (mono)
should be used.
Or you can specify a path to a libgdiplus.
Use this feature to specify optional runtime
components that you might not want to include. This
is only useful for developers embedding Mono that
require a subset of Mono functionality.
The list is a comma-separated list of components that
should be removed, these are:
Disables support for the Ahead of Time
Disables support for the default profiler.
Disables support for System.Decimal.
Support for Platform Invocation services,
disabling this will drop support for any
libraries using DllImport.
Drop debugging support.
Drop System.Reflection.Emit support
Disables support for large assemblies.
Disables support for debug logging.
Disables COM support.
Disables compilation for the SSA optimization
framework, and the various SSA-based
Generics support. Disabling this will not
allow Mono to run any 2.0 libraries or
code that contains generics.
Mono uses /dev/random to obtain good random data for
any source that requires random numbers. If your
system does not support this, you might want to
disable it.
There are a number of runtime options to control this
also, see the man page.
2. Using Mono
Once you have installed the software, you can run a few programs:
* runtime engine
mono program.exe
* C# compiler
mcs program.cs
* CIL Disassembler
monodis program.exe
See the man pages for mono(1), mint(1), monodis(1) and mcs(2)
for further details.
3. Directory Roadmap
Technical documents about the Mono runtime.
Configuration files installed as part of the Mono runtime.
The core of the Mono Runtime.
The object system and metadata reader.
The Just in Time Compiler.
CIL executable Disassembler
Common code for the JIT and the interpreter.
The I/O layer and system abstraction for
emulating the .NET IO model.
Common Intermediate Representation, XML
definition of the CIL bytecodes.
Interpreter for CLI executables (obsolete).
Architecture specific portions.
Manual pages for the various Mono commands and programs.
Scripts used to invoke Mono and the corresponding program.
A directory that contains the Makefiles that link the
mono/ and mcs/ build systems.