Linked by Eugenia Loli on Wed 24th Sep 2003 01:45 UTC
Slackware, Slax For almost a week now, I've been using Slackware 9.1 (RC-1 released today), and I am having a blast. Slackware doesn't have more than 6-8% of the Linux market these days, but it used to be one of the most-used distros back in the day. Today, many think of Slackware as a true classic, a thought that is often accompanied by a feeling that Slackware is not a user-friendly or an uber-modern Linux distribution. There is some truth in that statement, but there is always the big "But". Read on for our very positive experience with Slackware 9.1-pre. Update: In less than 24 hours since the RC-1, Slackware 9.1 RC-2 is out.
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re: Can you read?
by skaeight on Wed 24th Sep 2003 19:00 UTC

Agreed.

And

Why RPM Distro's aren't any good:

http://www.tldp.org/HOWTO/Software-Building-HOWTO-4.html


Here's an excerpt from the page:

"4.2 Problems with rpms: an example

Jan Hubicka wrote a very nice fractal package called xaos. At his home page, both .tar.gz and rpm packages are available. For the sake of convenience, let us try the rpm version, rather than the "tarball".

Unfortunately, the rpm of xaos fails to install. Two separate rpm versions misbehave.

rpm -i --test XaoS-3.0-1.i386.rpm

error: failed dependencies:
libslang.so.0 is needed by XaoS-3.0-1
libpng.so.0 is needed by XaoS-3.0-1
libaa.so.1 is needed by XaoS-3.0-1

rpm -i --test xaos-3.0-8.i386.rpm

error: failed dependencies:
libaa.so.1 is needed by xaos-3.0-8

The strange thing is that libslang.so.0, libpng.so.0, and libaa.so.1 are all present in /usr/lib on the system tested. The rpms of xaos must have been built with slightly different versions of those libraries, even if the release numbers are identical.

As a test, let us try installing xaos-3.0-8.i386.rpm with the --nodeps option to force the install. A trial run of xaos crashes.

xaos: error in loading shared libraries: xaos: undefined symbol: __fabsl

Let us stubbornly try to get to the bottom of this. Running ldd on the xaos binary to find its library dependencies shows all the necessary shared libraries present. Running nm on the /usr/lib/libaa.so.1 library to list its symbolic references shows that it is indeed missing __fabsl. Of course, the absent reference could be missing from one of the other libraries... There is nothing to be done about that, short of replacing one or more libraries.

Enough! Download the "tarball", XaoS-3.0.tar.gz, available from the ftp site, as well as from the home page. Try building it. Running ./configure, make, and finally (as root) make install, works flawlessly.

This is one of an number of examples of prepackaged binaries being more trouble than they are worth. "