NOTE: Parts of this document are likely to be out of date.
The Experimental Physics and Industrial Control Systems (EPICS) is an extensible set of software components and tools with which application developers can create a control system. This control system can be used to control accelerators, detectors, telescopes, or other scientific experimental equipment. EPICS base is the set of core software, i.e. the components of EPICS without which EPICS would not function. EPICS base allows an arbitrary number of target systems, IOCs (input/output controllers), and host systems, OPIs (operator interfaces) of various types.
This version of EPICS base contains significant changes and offers major improvements in functionality over previous versions. Please check the RELEASE_NOTES file in the distribution for description of changes and release migration details.
Please review the COPYRIGHT* files included in the distribution for legal terms of usage.
Currently this version of EPICS base has been built on the following hosts for the following targets. If you are trying to build EPICS base on a different host or for a different target machine you must get the proper host/target cross compiler and header files and you will have to create and add the appropriate new configure files to the base/configure/os/directory. You can start by copying existing configuration files in the configure/os directory and then make changes for your new platforms.
Host platforms (operating system - architecture - <alternate c++ compiler>)
darwin-ppc (Mac OS X)
Cross compile target platforms (operating system - architecture)
This version of EPICS base has been built and tested using the host vendor's C and C++ compilers as well as the GNU gcc and g++ compilers. The GNU cross-compilers have been used for all cross-compiled targets. You may need the host vendor's C++ compiler in your search path to do EPICS builds. Check definitions of ACC and CCC in base/configure/os/CONFIG.<host>.<host> or the definitions for GCC and G++ if ANSI=GCC and CPLUSPLUS=GCC are specified in CONFIG_SITE.
You must use GNU make, gnumake, for any EPICS builds. Set your path so that a gnumake version 3.78.1 or later is available.
You must have perl version 5.0 or later installed. The configure files do not specify the perl full pathname. You need the perl executable in your search path.
Unzip and tar (Winzip on WIN32 systems)
You must have tools available to unzip and untar the EPICS base distribution file.
You must have Tornado 2 installed if any of your target systems are vxWorks systems. Tornado 2 provides the cross-compiler and header files needed to build for these target systems. The full path location to Tornado 2 should be specified in the base/configure/RELEASE or base/configure/RELEASE.<hostarch> file. You will also need one or more board support packages. Consult the vxWorks documentation for details.
Optional GNU compiler requirement for solaris-sparc and win32-x86 hosts
If you have state notation language source files (*.st files) which require c preprocessing before conversion to c source, gcc must be in your path.
The GNU zipped tar file is approximately 1.4 MB in size. The unzipped untarred distribution source tree is approximately 6 MB. The build created files for each host take approximately 40 MB and the build created files for each target take approximately 10 MB.
EPICS documentation is available on the WWW via the EPICS home page at APS: URL http://www.aps.anl.gov/epics
This README.html file is in the base distribution and available on the IOC software, Base R3.14, release number, web page which can be accessed from the APS EPICS home page.
EPICS home page at APShttp://www.aps.anl.gov/epics
Other WWW sitesAdditional information on EPICS can be found at the various other WWW links on the EPICS home page at APS.
Mailing ListThere is an EPICS mailing list called tech-talk which is hosted at APS with a list repeater at BESSY. See The EPICS home page for subscription instructions.
Distribution directory structure:base Root directory of the base istribution
Install directories created by the build:
Installed scripts and executables in subdirs
base/db Installed data bases
base/html Installed html documentation
base/dbd Installed data base definitions
base/include Installed header files
base/include/os Installed os specific header files
base/lib Installed libraries in arch subdirectories
base/templates Installed templates
README.1st Instructions for setup and building epics base
README.html (html version of README.1st
README.WIN32 Microsoft WIN32 specific instructions
README.cxxTemplates Information about C++ templates in EPICS base
README.niCpu030 NI cpu030 specific instructions
README.darwin Installation notes for Mac OS X (Darwin)
base/startup directory - contains scripts to set environment and path
EpicsHostArch c shell script to set EPICS_HOST_ARCH env variable
EpicsHostArch.pl perl script to set EPICS_HOST_ARCH env variable
Site.profile bourne shell script to set path and env variables
Site.cshrc c shell script to set path and env variables
borland.bat WIN32 bat file to set path and env variables
win32.bat WIN32 bat file to set path and env variables
base/configure directory - contains build definitions and rules
CONFIG Includes configure files and allows variable overrides
CONFIG.CrossCommon Cross build definitions
CONFIG.gnuCommon Gnu compiler build definitions for all archs
CONFIG_ADDONS Definitions for <osclass> and DEFAULT options
CONFIG_BASE EPICS base tool and location definitions
CONFIG_BASE_VERSION Definitions for EPICS base version number
CONFIG_COMMON Definitions common to all builds
CONFIG_ENV Definitions of EPICS environment variables
CONFIG_SITE Site specific make defintions
CONFIG_SITE_ENV Site defaults for EPICS environment variables
MAKEFILE Installs CONFIG* RULES* creates CONFIG_APP_INCLUDE
RELEASE Location of external products such as Tornado II
RULES Includes appropriate rules file
RULES.Db Rules for database and database definition files
RULES_ARCHS Definitions and rules for building architectures
RULES_BUILD Build and install rules and definitions
RULES_DIRS Definitions and rules for building subdirectories
RULES_JAVA Definitions and rules for java jars and classes
RULES_TOP Rules specific to a <top> dir (uninstall and tar)
Sample.Makefile Sample makefile with comments
base/configure/os directory - contains os-arch specific definitions
CONFIG.<host>.<target> Specific host-target build definitions
CONFIG.Common.<target> Specific target definitions for all hosts
CONFIG.<host>.Common Specific host definitions for all targets
CONFIG.UnixCommon.Common Definitions for Unix hosts and all targets
CONFIG.Common.UnixCommon Definitions for Unix targets and all hosts
CONFIG.Common.vxWorksCommon Specific host definitions for all vx targets
CONFIG_COMPAT R3.13 arch compatibility definitions
CONFIG_SITE.<host>.<target> Site specific host-target definitions
CONFIG_SITE.Common.<target> Site specific target defs for all hosts
CONFIG_SITE.<host>.Common Site specific host defs for all targets
base/configure/tools directory - contains Perl scripts used for the build
MakeReleae Unix shell script to create a release tar file
convertRelease.pl Performs consistancy checks on RELEASE files
cp.pl This Perl script copies an existing file
installEpics.pl Installs built files into install directories.
makeDependsTargets.pl Creates targets of include dependency files
makeMakefile.pl Creates a Makefile in O.<arch> dirs
makeMakefileInclude.pl Creates file to be included by Makefile
mkdir.pl Creates a directory (like Unix mkdir)
mkmf.pl Generates dependencies from include stmnts
munch.pl Creates a ctdt.c file for vxWorks targets
mv.pl Renames an existing file.
replaceVAR.pl Changes CapFast VAR(xxx) to $(xxx) notation
rm.pl Quietly removes an existing file.
Unpack fileUnzip and untar the distribution file. Use WinZip on Windows systems.Set environment variablesFiles in the base/startup directory have been provided to help set required path and other environment variables .Do site-specific build configuration
Before you can build or use EPICS R3.14, the environment variable EPICS_HOST_ARCH must be defined. A perl script EpicsHostArch.pl in the base/startup directory has been provided to help set EPICS_HOST_ARCH. You should have EPICS_HOST_ARCH set to your host operating system followed by a dash and then your host architecture, e.g. solaris-sparc. If you are not using the OS vendor's c/c++ compiler for host builds, you will need another dash followed by the alternate compiler name (e.g. "-gnu" for GNU c/c++ compilers on a solaris host or "-borland" for Borland c/c++ compilers on a WIN32 host). See configure/CONFIG_SITE for a list of supported EPICS_HOST_ARCH values.
On WIN32, some versions of Perl require that the environment variable PERLLIB be set to <perl directory location>.
As already mentioned, you must have the perl executable and you may need C and C++ compilers in your search path. For building base you also must have echo in your search path. For Unix host builds you also need touch, cpp, cp, rm, mv, and mkdir in your search path and /bin/chmod must exist. On some Unix systems you may also need ar and ranlib in your path, and the c compiler may require ld in your path. On solaris systems you need uname in your path.
It is no longer necessary to have LD_LIBRARY_PATH include EPICS directories on Unix type system. R3.14 shared libraries and executables will contain the full path name to libraries they require. However, if you move the EPICS directories from their build-time location then in order for libraries to be found at runtime LD_LIBRARY_PATH must include the full pathname to $(INSTALL_LOCATION)/lib/$(EPICS_HOST_ARCH) when invoking executables. Building shared libraries is now the default setting for all Unix type hosts. NOTE: You will still need LD_LIBRARY_PATH for R3.13 extension shared libraries even if the R3.13 extensions are built with R3.14 base.
On WIN32 systems, building shared libraries is the default setting and you will need to add fullpathname to $(INSTALL_LOCATION)/lib/$(EPICS_HOST_ARCH) to your path. Building shared libraries is determined by the value of the macro SHARED_LIBRARIES in CONFIG_SITE (either YES or NO).Site configuration
To configure EPICS, you may want to modify the default definitions in the following files:configure/CONFIG_SITE Build choices. Specify target archs.Host configuration
configure/CONFIG_SITE_ENV Environment variable defaults
configure/RELEASE TORNADO 2 full path location
To configure each host system, you may override the default definitions by adding a new file with override definitions into the configure/os directory. The new file should have the same name as the distribution file to be overridden except with CONFIG in the name changed to CONFIG_SITE.configure/os/CONFIG.<host>.<host> - Host build settingsTarget configuration
configure/os/CONFIG.<host>.Common - Host cross build settings
To configure each target system, you may override the default definitions by adding a new file with override definitions into the configure/os directory. The new file should have the same name as the distribution file to be overridden except with CONFIG in the name replaced by CONFIG_SITE.configure/os/CONFIG.Common.<target> - Target cross settingsR3.13 compatibility configuration
configure/os/CONFIG.<host>.<target> - Host-target settings
To configure EPICS base for building with R3.13 extensions and ioc applications , you must modify the default definitions in the base/config/CONFIG_SITE* files to agree with definitions you made in base/configure and base/configure/os files.
Build EPICS baseAfter configuring the build you should be able to build EPICS base by issuing the following commands in the distribution's root directory (base)gnumake clean uninstallThe command "gnumake clean uninstall" will remove all files and directories generated by a previous build. The command "gnumake" will build and install everything for the configured host and targets.
It is recommended that you do a "gnumake clean uninstall" at the root directory of an EPICS directory structure before each complete rebuild to ensure that all components will be rebuilt.
You can build using a single EPICS directory structure on multiple host systems and for multiple cross target systems. The intermediate and binary files generated by the build will be created in separate subdirectories and installed into the appropriate separate host/target install directories. EPICS executables and perl scripts are installed into the $(INSTALL_LOCATION)/bin/<arch> directories. Libraries are installed into $(INSTALL_LOCATION)/lib/<arch>. The default definition for $(INSTALL_LOCATION) is $(TOP) which is the root directory in the distribution directory structure, base. Created object files are stored in O.<arch> source subdirectories, This allows objects for multiple cross target architectures to be maintained at the same time. To build EPICS base for a specific host/target combination you must have the proper host/target c/c++ cross compiler and target header files and the base/configure/os directory must have the appropriate configure files.
A perl tool, makeBaseApp.pl is included in the distribution file. This script will create a sample application that can be built and then executed to try out this release of base. Also, a perl script, makeBaseExt.pl, is included in the distribution file. This script will create a sample extension that can be built and executed. The makeBaseApp.pl and makeBaseExt.pl scripts are installed into the install location bin/<hostarch> directory during the base build.
Instructions for building and executing the 3.14 example application can be found in the section "Example Application" of Chapter 2, "Getting Started", in the "IOC Application Developer's Guide" for this release. The "Example IOC Application" section briefly explains how to create and build an example application in a user created <top> directory. It also explains how to run the example application on a vxWorks ioc or a host system and run an example channel access client on the host system.