[Beowulf] Parallel Development Tools

andrew holway andrew at moonet.co.uk
Wed Oct 17 05:30:51 EDT 2007


Apt-cache with a bit of grep is a powerful tool indeed.

$apt-cache search foo | grep bar

everyone I work with however prefers yum. They regard Debian as being
a bit backward.

On 17/10/2007, Tim Cutts <tjrc at sanger.ac.uk> wrote:
>
> On 16 Oct 2007, at 10:19 pm, Robert G. Brown wrote:
>
> > On Tue, 16 Oct 2007, Jon Tegner wrote:
> >
> >> You should switch to a .deb-system, to save you some trouble:
> >>
> >> $ apt-cache search jove
> >> jove - Jonathan's Own Version of Emacs - a compact, powerful editor
> >>
> >> Sorry, couldn't resist ;-)
> >
> > Hey, it's ok.  I'm actually trisystemal.  FC 6 on top (soon to jump to
> > 8, but in no hurry), VMware, then debian and XP Pro VM.  And yes,
> > it was
> > a good thing debian already had jove as I still don't really know
> > how to
> > build debian packages,
>
> If you want a good introduction to debian packages and how they work,
> then I recommend Martin Krafft's book "The Debian System".  I've been
> a Debian Developer for ten years, and that book still teaches me
> useful stuff about Debian on a regular basis.
>
> The chapter on packaging is superb; it teaches you how to make
> packages from the ground up, so you really understand how they work,
> starting with the basic fact that fundamentally a debian binary
> package is an ar archive which contains two tarballs.  One,
> data.tar.gz contains the files belonging to the package.  The other,
> control.tar.gz, contains the scripts and information about the
> package used by the packaging tools, and at a minimum this contains
> two files:  DEBIAN/control, which contains the information about the
> package (description, dependencies and whatnot) and DEBIAN/md5sums
> which is, as you'd expect, a list of md5sums of all the plain files
> in the package.
>
> Once he's shown you how to build a Debian package manually like that,
> he then shows you how to do it the more normal way using the various
> wrapper scripts that Debian provides for the purpose to make life a
> bit easier (and to help enforce the Debian policy on packages)
>
> Debian doesn't really have a source package idea like Red Hat -
> instead, when you use "apt-get source" to download the source for a
> package you get three files; the upstream tarball, which is
> completely unmodified from upstream.  You also get a gzipped patch,
> and a description file containing md5sums for the patch and the
> tarball, amongst other things.  Typically, the patch creates a debian
> directory within the upstream source directory, and inside that
> debian directory is a file called "rules".  This is just a normal
> makefile, containing all the instructions for configuring, compiling
> and packaging the software on a Debian system.  Once you have one of
> these things, building the .debs is just a matter of typing:
>
> dpkg-buildpackage -rfakeroot
>
> or something similar.  There are still fancier things available for
> doing this by keeping the sources and debian/* files in a CVS,
> subversion or other revision control repository.  I use these in my
> own package management activities to be able to go back and build
> previous releases when users report bugs against them.
>
> > and manage to get myself confused by apt tools
>
> I can sympathise.  I've only started using aptitude since etch came
> out, and it's taken me some time to get used to, but now that I am, I
> quite like it, for the most part.  Especially the etch version, the
> version of it in sarge had some really annoying behaviour under
> certain circumstances.
>
> > (I'm too used to yum).  But there is no doubt:
> >
> >   a) Debian is a perfectly useful, fully functional variety of linux,
> > and I have been painfully taught to bow down before its selection of
> > available packages, which is for all practical purposes inexhaustible.
> > In fact, you need a search engine with powerful features even to go
> > shopping amongst them.
>
> ... which fortunately it provides for you.  It's called apt-cache.
>
> Regards,
>
> Tim
>
>
> --
>  The Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute is operated by Genome Research
>  Limited, a charity registered in England with number 1021457 and a
>  company registered in England with number 2742969, whose registered
>  office is 215 Euston Road, London, NW1 2BE.
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