View Full Version : RPM hell

14-05-2004, 08:13 PM
I hear of people, as well as reading it in PCW, that people find installing apps a nightmare in linux if there happens to be alot of dependancies. Has anyone tried Redcarpet instead?

14-05-2004, 08:24 PM
Well, it can be a challenge, but it seems to be getting pretty simple now - at
least for mainstream applications.

Having just reinstalled Win XP and LINUX (2 new hard drives) I sure find the
LINUX install MUCH faster and easier.
Your mileage may vary, I was using Win XP pro, and RedHat Linux.
Win took so long with the formatting of 2 disks I gave up and did the
formatting in Linux, that saved quite a few hours, wish I could find a way to
speed up the Win up-date service. Pity the MS update disk is still coming
"real soon now" Never tried Redcarpet, never heard of it yet, but Redmond is
still a bit tedious.

Have fun

Murray P
14-05-2004, 08:28 PM
I use a Debian based distro with Synaptget. Seems to sort everything on the fly pretty much but, I haven't got too adventurous as yet.

Whats Redcarpet. Got a link? I presume it's a Redhat utility, does/can it work for other disto's?

Cheers Murray P

14-05-2004, 08:55 PM
There are many ways to install apps. And there are ways to carry out RPM installs that satisfy dependency just fine-eg apt and a gui front end Synaptic. Also there are Debian and sourced based distos. You see its not so black and white. Think of RPM hell being similar to DLL hell in MS Windows.

14-05-2004, 09:42 PM
Hi Murray,

Red Carpet is a Ximian product. It primarily seems to support the main three "commercial" distros prior to the 2.6 kernel. The details are here (http://www.ximian.com/products/redcarpet) :)


Murray P
14-05-2004, 09:46 PM
Ta Gorela. Off to check it out.

Cheers Murray P

15-05-2004, 10:14 AM
Personally I know of yum, synaptic, kynaptic (A KDE gui similar to synaptic only tidier and easier to use), up2date, and there's several other tools.

In Gentoo, I type:
emerge appname
and it goes off, finds all the needed library's etc and compiles and installs them for me! No more interaction until its done!

I would rather kynaptic though (Tried it in the latest Ark Linux). Its brilliant.
Havent actually tried yum myself.

So yes, installing apps in Linux is much easier in most cases.
When I first started with Redhat 8, it was a little bit of a nightmare at times, but its so much better now, easier that Doze because it finds the files, downloads them, and installs them all for you :-)


Jen C
15-05-2004, 10:47 AM
I sometimes use yum to install packages with (on Fedora), it is similar to Gentoo's emerge where you just enter into a command line window, yum install {package name}. If the package is available it will find the required dependencies and install them as well. It tells you what it is doing at each stage and you can say Y/N to the listed packages before it installs them. I believe there is a GUI frontend for yum being developed which would be great. With the yum.conf file, you can add/remove whatever package depositories you would like yum to use if the default ones are not suitable. You can also install and use apt-get if you prefer.

As you can see, there are a variety of package managers available which will help prevent any package dependency problems - not saying that you still won't occasionally run into it though :)

Graham L
15-05-2004, 01:23 PM
And of course there's the Redhat database which lets the -aid option work. I often use mc to install rpms ... it lets you look at the HEADER file (information about the package) do an install or update, look at any file in the package (including the dependencies), and if the rpm database has been installed, tells you which packages must be installed first. I've had no problems since I put this database on. I put all my rpms in /var/packages and I'm happy.

The main problem has been that the missing dependencies tells you the name of the missing part, but the name of the rpm package which contains it. You need to be a good detective to find them sometimes.

I've got a script (from Linux Journal) which will search all the rpms I have for a component ... I came across http://rom.pbone.net/ today, which will search all the rpms on any or all FTP sites (or named packages). This is probably based on that script. (It uses the rpm query options).

Mandrake's GUI rpm installer works well (when it works). It stopped working for me so I'm back to RH. :D