package management (was: Re: [rescue] Re:EMACS)

Gregory Leblanc rescue at
Thu Jun 28 00:38:46 CDT 2001

On 27 Jun 2001 15:35:17 -0500, Bill Bradford wrote:
> On Wed, Jun 27, 2001 at 08:32:30PM +0100, Paul Sladen wrote:
> > Had you been using Debian/GNU/Linux ( you could have typed:
> >   apt-get install emacs
> <troll>
> apt-get is for weenies who dont want to compile and build their
> own software.  Same with rpm.  pkgadd too, if you want to get
> really picky...  pkgadd is good for adding the gcc package, then
> using that to recompile gcc, then "pkgrm SUNWgcc" then "make install".
> </troll>

apt-get is a pretty impressive front-end for package management
software.  I absolutely hate the process of installing Debian, but once
it's up and running, updating packages is a breeze.  I'd love to have a
really nice, configurable front end like apt for RPM (I know about apt
for rpm, it's not quite what I want).  Package management is a godsend
for anybody who managed multiple machines, or for anybody who
distributes software, and wants to make it easy for people to install
their software.  I write docs on RPM, and I do the packaging of GNOME
for Red Hat.
Package management software really only falls down when the OS doesn't
commit to supporting it, like the *BSDs, and Solaris.  In order for
package management to work, it can't start once the base OS is up and
running, it really needs to know about darn near every system file.
Everything in the immediate directories in /, everything in /usr, and so
on.  I like RPM because it's implemention is solid, and because
development is evolving quickly.  I like dpkg because of apt.  pkg*
fails because it doesn't manage the files that belong to the OS, just
packages and patches that get added (unless I'm missing something).

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