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Old 05-17-2003, 04:09 AM   #1
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Linux programs

Hi, I recently just started using Red Hat Linux 9.0 after many years of using windows, and i've really run into many problems with software installation. I guess this is more of a complain than a specific problem.

out of say 20 programs that i have downloaded, i have only successfully got 1 DVD player software and 1 plugin for Mozilla to work. The others simply have many problems.

There are several questions i would like to ask:

1. Where do program files get installed to after i type "rpm -i *.rpm" (whichever the rpm is)? How do i actually run the software i installed? I just succeeded in installing Wine but i just don't know what is the commands to run it.

2. Mandrake Linux open source programs be run on other types of Linux e.g. Red Hat? Vice Versa? Can UNIX programs be installed on Linux?

3. How do I troubleshoot dependency problems? I'm having a lot of trouble with this.

4. Is "make clean" and "make uninstall" sufficient to remove all the files which i have installed?

5. There was an occasion that i upgraded my kernel early, and i realised i haven't installed my development tools. When i tried to install them from my cd, there were dependency problems. Being a newbie to Linux, i could not solve this issue and chose to reinstall the whole OS. How do i solve this backward compatibility problem? Because of this I don't dare to upgrade my kernel or OS.

I'm very much alone in using this OS, as all my other frens are not using Linux, and this is my only source of human help. Will reallie appreciate any help rendered

Old 05-17-2003, 04:28 AM   #2
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1. Really, it doesn't matter. I'll be glad to answer that, but be aware, it doesn't matter. Why? Because in linux there is a thing known as a $PATH. In this $PATH are the executable files that get installed with RPM's. Most of the time, when an RPM is installed, it places the binary file (the .exe if you will) in this $PATH which in then turn allows you to just type the name of the program to execute it, instead of typing the full path.... To answer the question:
Usually in /usr/bin or /bin and sometimes /usr/local/bin and rarely, yet occasionally /sbin /usr/sbin There are other possibilities, these are just the most common. Other's might include the /opt and for some custom programs ~/.

2. For the most part, yes. You can run Mandrake programs on RH and vice versa. However, for more advanced applications, this is not true. Some smaller ones might have problems as well, and especially if the apps are from different kernel releases. Unix programs on Linux, pretty much a yes.

3. Good luck. Hell, I bet Linus (if you even uses RPM's) has problems with dependencies too. Look at for a program called Synaptic and/or apt4rpm to help resolve dependency issues.

4. make clean=no make uninstall=yes. If an application has uninstall included in the make file (meaning make uninstall actually works) it should be sufficient. make clean only cleans up the directory in which you are "making" the files.

5. Development tools is another big problem for n00bs. It's very hard to install GCC after you have installed your system because of all the dependency issues. It can be done, it's just not as easy as during install. Best bet is to just make sure you get your development tools installed each time (at the very least gcc).


Basically, you are not alone. You might look at gentoo ; a FAR FAR better package management system/distro than what you are currently using.

Old 05-17-2003, 04:44 AM   #3
Mega Man X
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I must tell you... Linux is just the best and the most rewarding thing I've ever tried with computers. My first experience with Linux was not good either. That was about 4-5 years ago. But you will get there. Though, you will have to have a LOT of time to read and understand the programs you donwload. Usually, all you need is in the Readme that cames with the program and your distro CD's.

Here are some tips, I believe your questions will be answered eventually.

Sometimes you will dowload programs from source. That means you will have to compile it yourself cause there's no "exe" like in M$. Let's take an exemple from source. Let's say you've download a program called "gaim". It's full name is "gaim.20030303.tar.gz"

First, uncompress the file with:

gunzip gaim.20030303.tar.gz

You will uncompress it to gaim.20030303.tar and not the file get bigger. Uncompress now from the called tarball (tar)

tar -xvf gaim.20030303.tar.gz

Now it's your time to read the read me file which surely cames with gaim. It's into your uncompressed folder somewhere. Some programs may be compiled diferently. The "standard" should be:


This command will check for the installed components into your system. There, you will see if you can or not install gaim into your computer. If you get any error messages, for exemple, "gcc not installed", that means, indeed, you will have to install gcc into your computer. This usually comes with your CD's. RedHat uses "install or Remove Software" system, simply look after the program that "./configure" complained.

After that is simple to install it with



make install.

For more informations, read this post from one of our moderators:

Installing from RPM's. This usually is easier them from source code and much faster then compiling. You can usually use RPM's in any system which can handle, rpm's. Let's say again that this time, you've download gaim in rpm instead of source. it's now called gaim.20030303.rpm. to install it, the syntax is:

rpm -ivh gaim.20030303.rpm

That would install it direcly into your system. If not, will bring also error messages as ./configure. Write the error messages, they are missing files into your system that you will also probaly be able to install from your CD's. RedHat 9.0 is pretty new and should have anything you need, same to mandrake 9.x

For more informations about that, check this site out. It's from another guy in this forum who helped me a lot:

If my old RedHat 7.3 works is thanks to that page. Also, there's one last thing that you will love. It's a program called "apt-get" which was firstly created for Debian systems and not there's rpm's for us. It makes life of linux newbies user MUCH MUCH easier. It allows you to download most of the programs from the net, install, install the dependencies necessaries with only running a commando line. Exemples, to install gaim, simply type at your command line:

apt-get install gaim

DONE. Nothing more. it will update your packages, libraries, make the dependecies (so you don't need to use your CD's everytime you need to install something).

Want to install Mplayer? The best media player for linux, which kicks M$ Media Player arses? Do the same thing:

apt-get install mplayer

DONE. Not only the player, but also it's gui and everything. That easy and I have it running neat into my old RedHat 7.3 and fast as hell in an older machine.

You prefer AVfile to play DivX movies?

apt-get install avifile

With apt-get you can even update your system (apt-get dist-upgrade) and apt-get itselfs (apt-get update).
The page of this baby is here:

Make sure to read ALL documents before installing anything or you may blow your system. Doing as it says you can't go wrong. I highly recomend apt-get first, so you get your system up-to-date and can install everything as you choose (rpm's, from source or from the fantastic apt-get).

Good luck. Hope it was of any help and that you could understand my bad english as well
Old 05-17-2003, 11:10 AM   #4
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Thanks all for ur helpful and informative replies
Guess i still have a long way to go....
Old 05-17-2003, 11:15 AM   #5
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Location: Atlantic City, NJ
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Originally posted by MasterC
You might look at gentoo ; a FAR FAR better package management system/distro than what you are currently using.
hehe Boy you really hate RPMs Chad. Are you head of the ARHO(Anti RedHat Organization)? Are you considering not helping me anymore because I use RedHat?
Old 05-17-2003, 03:54 PM   #6
Registered: Jan 2003
Location: Finland
Distribution: ElementaryOS Freya as main, every other ubuntu-based as testing
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It is a long way to go, but the longer U go, the more U learn, and the more U like it.
My "first contact" with Linux was in -98, with an old version of Slackware..
on a CD that came with a computer magazine. It had a short guide of installing it
Basically it was like
1. do a rawrite <BOOT_IMAGE>
2. do a rawrite <ROOT_IMAGE>
3. boot it
4. run installer program

The funny part was there were no doc's or howtos included,
they said for saving the CD's disk space for "more important" software..
Well, there I was, in front of a shell, wondering like "What-a-h&%l-do-I-do-next..??"
Old 05-17-2003, 04:14 PM   #7
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Originally posted by Crashed_Again
hehe Boy you really hate RPMs Chad. Are you head of the ARHO(Anti RedHat Organization)? Are you considering not helping me anymore because I use RedHat?
Nah, I figure if someone wants to live in a world of RPM's... Well to each their own.



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