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The GNU Autoconf Manual

The GNU Automake Manual

The GNU Libtool Manual

GNU Autoconf, Automake and Libtool by Gary V. Vaughan, Ben Elliston, Tom Tromey and Ian Lance Taylor. Also known as "The Goat Book".

An Autotools Tutorial by A. Duret-Lutz. This is a great tutorial, but one of the nicest aspects of this web site is the list of Autotools resources at the bottom of the first page.

The GNU M4 Macro Processor Manual

The GNU Make Utility Manual

The GNU Coding Standards

The GNU sed Manual

Bruce Barnett's very well-written Unix utility tutorials

The AC Autoconf Macro Archive - an archive of drop-in components for autoconfiscated projects. Macros are fully classified for easy lookup, and full documentation for each macro is provided.


ksudeadeye's picture


I wanted to recommend a couple more resources I found helpful while learning Autotools.

The first is kind of a crash course tutorial by A. Duret-Lutz. He keeps it very current:

The second is "The Goat Book" which you discuss in detail. Redhat hosts it for free:

Author information

John Calcote's picture


John Calcote has worked in the software industry for over 25 years, the last 17 of which were at Novell. He's currently a Sr. Software Engineer with the LDS Church working on open source projects. He's the project maintainer of the openslp project, the openxdas project, and the dnx project on He blogs on open source, programming and software engineering issues in general at