4.8 Concurrent stable and development versions

It can be useful to have both the stable and the development versions of LilyPond available at once. One way to do this on GNU/Linux is to install the stable version using the precompiled binary, and run the development version from the source tree. After running make all from the top directory of the LilyPond source files, there will be a binary called lilypond in the out directory:

<path to>/lilypond/out/bin/lilypond

This binary can be run without actually doing the make install command. The advantage to this is that you can have all of the latest changes available after pulling from git and running make all, without having to uninstall the old version and reinstall the new.

So, to use the stable version, install it as usual and use the normal commands:

lilypond foobar.ly

To use the development version, create a link to the binary in the source tree by saving the following line in a file somewhere in your $PATH:

exec <path to>/lilypond/out/bin/lilypond "$@"

Save it as Lilypond (with a capital L to distinguish it from the stable lilypond), and make it executable:

chmod +x Lilypond

Then you can invoke the development version this way:

Lilypond foobar.ly


- other compilation tricks for developers

LilyPond Contributor’s Guide v2.25.16 (development-branch).