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Old 01-23-2014, 12:40 PM   #1
ProzacR
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Slackware tools do not provide dependency resolution for packages


Now I am Debian user and I think about trying Slackware just out of curiosity, but it's tools do not provide dependency resolution for packages. Is that big problem or time consuming to deal with that yourself?

Also it is hard to find how you upgrade Slackware distribution version? There are tools for that or just reinstall?
 
Old 01-23-2014, 01:09 PM   #2
Cultist
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It isn't as big a problem as you're imagining. Most things don't require a lot of new dependency installations (with a few exceptions such as those things that require pangomm or that need a lot of Gnome dependencies). It will be a little more time consuming, but it isn't very bad.

There are a few tools that do dependency resolution for you though, like d4wnr4z0r's sbotools, which pulls from slackbuilds.org (the main source of third party slackbuilds) and resolves the dependencies for you.

Give it a try, don't be too put off by the package management though. It's how we like it, but as you're aware it is very different from what debian uses.

As for upgrading, every new release comes with UPGRADE.TXT which is a text file describing in detail how to upgrade your current system to the newest system. It isn't automatic, but it is pretty simple and painless.

Last edited by Cultist; 01-23-2014 at 01:15 PM.
 
Old 01-23-2014, 01:10 PM   #3
Ratmonkey
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I've never upgraded Slackware, so I can't really comment on that. I've always just loaded a fresh install after backing everything up. I'm of the opinion that one should reload a computer at least once every 6 months...

As for installing software, I've installed a number of packages using SBo and do not find it to be all that difficult to install dependencies. Usually there are none, or just 1 or 2 to do, and only adds about 2 minutes to the process. I have installed some larger packages that have dependencies, which have more dependencies, which have more dependencies. But all in all, it really wasn't difficult. I'm a long time newbie of Linux, and I have actually enjoyed installing software on Slackware. It's much easier than it used to be too...

Just install it and run man, there is a lot of help here in the forums if you run into major issues, and of course the slackbook is great too.
 
Old 01-23-2014, 01:14 PM   #4
ProzacR
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Oki, thanks.
I think I will try it.
 
Old 01-23-2014, 01:16 PM   #5
Ratmonkey
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Worst case is that you'll run into a bump, and be like "What the heck??" and then realize, on yeah there IS a dependency and that's why it's failing. Then you'll load the dependency, and try the main package again. When it works, you'll feel like king of the world. I never get that feeling with Red Hat or Ubuntu =)
 
Old 01-23-2014, 01:30 PM   #6
camorri
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Yes you can upgrade Slackware, as long as you do not skip any releases. I have upgrades 13.37 to 14.0, and then 14.0 to 14.1.

I follow the UPGRADE.TXT file included on the ISO. It gives you all the information you need for an upgrade. If you have packages from Slackbuilds installed, you need to upgrade those after the base system. Sbopkg is a nice tool to do that with.
 
Old 01-23-2014, 01:56 PM   #7
hitest
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ProzacR View Post
Now I am Debian user and I think about trying Slackware just out of curiosity, but it's tools do not provide dependency resolution for packages. Is that big problem or time consuming to deal with that yourself?
If you are new to Slackware it is a good idea to do a full install. A full install of Slackware is designed to work out of the box with all dependencies met.
 
Old 01-23-2014, 01:56 PM   #8
qweasd
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Quote:
Originally Posted by camorri View Post
Yes you can upgrade Slackware, as long as you do not skip any releases.
Yes, per official documentation. But from my experience, the upgrade procedure is rather robust. I think I upgraded 12.0 to 13.37 once, and it was entirely painless. Your mileage may vary, of course.
 
Old 01-23-2014, 02:13 PM   #9
enorbet
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Greetings and welcome to Slackware

To be blunt, NOT resolving dependencies automatically is the Main Reason I prefer Slackware. If you have used Debian or any other distro for more than 5 years I'm sure you remember back then that breakage, either of an app (or several) or even the entire system was all too common, due to dependency issues.

Now, that is no longer commonplace, but the means to that end was a strict set of rules and altering of locations of directories and files, that have caused a large break with basic inter-compatibility causing ever more isolation from other distros (and source itself) and those rules cannot be altered by the user/owner except at grave peril.

I have never broken my Slackware system in 12 years no matter how big the dependency list was. The worst that ever happened was that a new package would fail to run... prompting me to learn something to get it right. BTW, Slackware accommodates adding options that can be important to an applications variety and usefulness that is excruciatingly harder to accomplish (if possible at all) in dependency resolving distros.

In all honesty I have rendered a system unbootable for a time because of a mistake in building a custom kernel, but that is easy to fix, thanks to the install media stopping at a boot commandline and the system defaulting to a for real Runlevel 3 commandline. Plus, there is no need to build a custom kernel. That is just my choice. There it is in a nutshell - choice. Slackware does not confine users. If you wish to try out a new driver that needs to be installed outside of X, you don't have to wait for developers to make that available as a dkms package. If that driver should fail, it is trivial to fix from a full featured runlevel 3 commandline. You will never find yourself booting to a black screen that makes you feel lost and helpless.

This and much more about not resolving dependencies for you, makes the rare occasion where any extra time must be spent, pay off with major dividends. If you've been on and around LQ for awhile, I'm sure you've noticed that some of the best help comes from Slackware users. There's a reason for that "it logically follows".
 
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Old 01-23-2014, 03:07 PM   #10
dugan
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ProzacR View Post
Now I am Debian user and I think about trying Slackware just out of curiosity, but it's tools do not provide dependency resolution for packages. Is that big problem or time consuming to deal with that yourself?
It's really not. A full install of Slackware includes enough so that most third party packages need at most a few dependencies. Generally, you build third party packages using scripts from SlackBuilds.org, which lists dependencies for each package. There's the sbopkg frontend to slackbuilds.org, which allows you to build queues graphically. And then there are tools like sqg, which auto-generate queues.

To install ffmpeg and all its dependencies after you have the queues generated, you just do:

Code:
sbopkg -i ffmpeg
Quote:
Also it is hard to find how you upgrade Slackware distribution version?
I always back up and reinstall, but I do know that upgrading is a painless and well documented process. Every version of Slackware includes an UPGRADE.TXT file telling you just how to do it.

Last edited by dugan; 01-23-2014 at 03:08 PM.
 
Old 01-23-2014, 03:38 PM   #11
ReaperX7
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Dependency resolution is a fickle must-have for UNIX-like systems.

The problem with using dependency resolution is that it puts a huge workload on those who maintain the system. Because Slackware is maintained by only a small group, including Patrick, Eric, Robby, and a few others very little can be devoted to creating ready-to-use packages.

As a result SBo was created to provide build scripts and patches to source tarballs by community contributors, one of which heads it up is Robby also, and many other volunteers. However, SBo does post and link it's webpages usually to required dependencies not already included with the full Slackware recommended installation.

Plus, Slackware installs full packages, not just binary only, library only, developer only, or whatever only packages in broken down form but in simplifying the package management system to be neat and clean, and very minimalistic with one package to rule them all.

Once you actually start using manual dependency management you actually can control what goes into your system as some packages can be entirely optional. This gives YOU maximum control of the system.

Slackware's package management is one of the best and one of the most classically in line with the standard /configure, make, make install, cp /path/to/file /path/to/install methods used by from-source distributions like LFS, and even classic BSD and UNIX methods.

Last edited by ReaperX7; 01-23-2014 at 03:41 PM.
 
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Old 01-23-2014, 03:42 PM   #12
Didier Spaier
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Sorry to be late at the party, Package and dependency management shouldn't put you off Slackware from RuarÝ ědegaard says it all.
 
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Old 01-23-2014, 04:05 PM   #13
astrogeek
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Slackware's package management tools are among its best features!

The addition of the non-automatic dependency resolution feature (not available in most other distros!) is icing on the cake!

Having sorted out other mangled systems in the past when automated dependency resolution goes bad, I really appreciate the added convenience of the Slackware way!
 
Old 01-23-2014, 04:14 PM   #14
fsalk
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@ProzacR: don't be affraid of Slackware I had Debian-Slackware dual-boot and now Slackware is my only OS. It may take some time to get used to slackpkg, sbopkg and similar tools, but you'll enjoy your Slackware
 
Old 01-23-2014, 06:48 PM   #15
vtel57
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I've been running Slackware on all my systems as my primary operating system for nearly 8 years now. I've rarely ever run across an issue with Dependency H3LL in Slackware. Slackware comes installed with most of what you'll need. If there are other apps you must have, many will be found at SlackBuilds.org, Slacky.eu, AlienBob's repos or Robby Workman's repos. Plus, you can always learn to build your own SlackBuilds. It's not difficult at all. Most dependencies are listed in the source README files of the apps you're trying to build.

Have fun!

~Eric
 
  


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