i wasn't using RPMs as i've recently moved from RH9 to slackware and hope never to work with RPMs again
i have found a solution, don't know if this is any good to anyone else but here goes....
i removed (except for XML-parser) what i have already installed from the original list of packages required, going into each source directory and using 'make uninstall'.
i downloaded and installed....
......as root to install all the packages. all is working fine now, and my 'tester app' is on my desktop telling me how many days till next christmas.