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Portable Software-Installation with pkgsrc

Hubert Feyrer
Chaos Communication Congress 21th (21C3) 2004
Indexed on
Mar 27, 2013
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Have you tried installing a certain package on (say) Linux, Solaris, MacOS X, MS Windows and NetBSD at the same time? The pkgsrc system allows doing so by a simple "make install" instead of knowing lots of details. The presentation discusses the problems when installing open source on Unix(like) systems and identifies specific areas that need attention, and how they manifest in various architectures of open source systems today, leading from a rather simple layered theory to a complex graph in reality, which requires environmental considerations like demands for flexibility and maintainability when addressed. The pkgsrc system is introduced as a possible solution, which can be used to install software easily from source independent of your operating system. A general overview of the pkgsrc system is given followed by an user-oriented example on how to bootstrap it and compile packages on a Linux system. with a special emphasis of working without root privileges. Operation of the pkgsrc system is described next, with details on the install process and an overview of available packages. Last, details on how a package is constructed are outlined, including dependency handling. The presentation is intended for users of all Unix(like) systems that need to maintain and update software on a regular base and across various platforms, emphasizing the cross-platform nature of pkgsrc, which includes Linux, FreeBSD, OpenBSD, MacOS X, Solaris, Irix and even MS Windows. Developers working on other package systems will get an overview of how things are done in NetBSD, which is very close to the FreeBSD and OpenBSD ports system as well as the Gentoo portage system.

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