So let's optimize this. The times below are all medians from 5 consecutive runs, writing over an existing installation, so they all had to do the same amount of work.
This is the baseline:
- make install — 10.493 s
The first change is to use a faster shell. This system is using bash as /bin/sh. Many Linux distributions now use dash instead, but for some reason I haven't changed this system during the upgrade.
- make install SHELL=/bin/dash — 6.344 s
The next thing is to avoid installing the translation files. This exploded the number of files that need to be installed. Instead of, say, one program file, you end up installing one program file and a dozen or so translation files.
- make install SHELL=/bin/bash enable_nls=no — 6.890 s
- make install SHELL=/bin/dash enable_nls=no — 4.482 s
Another tip I remembered from the past was to use the make -s option to avoid screen output. Depending on the operating system and whether you are logged in locally or remotely, this can be a big win. On my system, this got lost in the noise a bit, but it appeared to make a small difference over many runs.
- make install SHELL=/bin/bash -s — 10.511 s
- make install SHELL=/bin/dash -s — 6.146 s
Next, let's replace the install-sh script that does the actual file copying. For obscure reasons, PostgreSQL always uses that shell script, instead of the /usr/bin/install program that an Autoconf-based build system would normally use. But you can override the make variables and sustitute the program you want:
- make install SHELL=/bin/bash INSTALL=install — 5.418 s
- make install SHELL=/bin/dash INSTALL=install — 3.995 s
Finally, you can also use parallel make for the installation step:
- make install SHELL=/bin/bash -j2 — 6.538 s
- make install SHELL=/bin/dash -j2 — 4.158 s
- make install SHELL=/bin/dash -j3 — 3.330 s
- make install SHELL=/bin/dash -j4 — 2.944 s
- make install SHELL=/bin/dash -j5 — 2.930 s
- make install SHELL=/bin/dash -j6 — 2.952 s
Now let's put everything together:
- make install SHELL=/bin/dash enable_nls=no INSTALL=install -s -j4 — 1.708 s
- make install SHELL=/bin/dash enable_nls=no INSTALL=install -s -j3 — 1.654 s
The problem is, it is not all that easy to pass these options to the make install calls made in make check runs. If you can and want to change your system shell, and you configure without NLS support, then you will probably already be more than half way there. Then again, I suspect most readers already have that setup anyway. For the other options, to take down the installation time to almost instantaneous, you have to do ad hoc surgery in various places. I'm looking into improving that.