Activating a profile essentially boils down to exporting a bunch of environmental variables. This is the role of the ‘etc/profile’ within the profile.
Note: Only the environmental variables of the packages that consume them will be set.
For instance, ‘MANPATH’ won’t be set if there is no consumer application for man pages within the profile. So if you need to transparently access man pages once the profile is loaded, you’ve got two options:
The same is true for ‘INFOPATH’ (you can install ‘info-reader’), ‘PKG_CONFIG_PATH’ (install ‘pkg-config’), etc.