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Old 06-05-2005, 06:55 PM   #1
Registered: Jun 2005
Location: Australia
Distribution: Linux linux01 3.9.5-301.fc19.x86_64
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Install of XFree86 on SLACKWARE...and misc.

Has anyone ever upgraded X Window system(XFree86) on a SLACKWARE Linux? I just did (to current), and it come with its own installer, called, which isn't too bad, actually. But it seems not to use SW's native package management, which sort of makes sense, sincee there are so many packaging systems. What this means is that PKGTOOL registry of course now contains the old packages.modules, and who knows where - if anywhere - there is a record of what was installed. (Of course its a free country, and there's nothing to stop a guy installing the native .tgz's any which way, but then you wonder what is being lost by not following the supplied script, and whatever customization it is doing.......)

I guess I have two (three?) questions:
1.Does this unorthodox package install even matter? Personally, I think it does. What if one wants to uninstall the new guys, the Xfree86 4.5.0 and fall back (for whatever reason); what, and how, - exactly - do you uninstall?
2. Can you uninstall (REMOVEOPKG) the old packages (which are now superceded) that remain in SW's registry? My guess is no, since that would remove the newly installed modules...but I could be wrong on this....I would be grateful for feedback as to how REMOVEPKG actually works. Does he only remove packages that he installed with PGHTOOL, or any and all modules pertaining to the package name in his registry, regardless of how they were installed.
3. Related to this, I once installed some IBM DB2 packages with RPM (which I believe is an imperfect implementation of Redhat's RPM ), which remain in the RPM registry. I later installed/upgraded them with SW's native package management tools (after converting .rpm to .tgz with the obscure rpm2tgz utility), yet the old ones remain in the RPM registry. Can I use RPM to remove these guys? My feeling is that the answer is the same as above: package removal,causes module removal...but, as I say, I could be wrong.

Anyway, all this package management - about which I have had to learn far more than I wished - has indicated to me that it is important to go with some kind of standardized scheme (of course, it depends on what one is doing and why). For me, I am doing all this to exploit IBM DB2 UDB on LINUX, and it (IBM's DB2) uses RedHatRPM-based package-based install. It appears that RPM has become a de facto standard? Is this correct? Anything else spells trouble, as I have learnt (subject of another thread), and so my plan is to migrate to an RPM-based distro.

All this reminds me of when I was an IBM MVS (mainframe) Systems Programmer 20 years ago, and had to use its SMP (System Maintenace/Modification Program) to install and upgrade software. That was a clunky piece of work with all its dependency maintenance and management, and it seems to me that the off-host (aka PC, distributed, open, whatever) computer world continues to follow in the well-trodden footsteps of its despised (mainframe) predecessors ..(more than once have I read recently about "dependency hell") .
Anyway, just my thoughts ...
Old 06-05-2005, 10:54 PM   #2
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Registered: Jun 2004
Location: Argentina (SR, LP)
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1) You've to remove them with a utility they may provide (depends on them) or manually delete what was installed. I guess since the XFree86 is a big piece of software it should come with a uninstaller.
2) I won't suggest you to do this since if they share some names the XFree86 you installed manually with Xorg from SW (and they do) you will remove those if you remove Xorg using SW. Removepkg removes files listed in the package in /var/log/packages provided they aren't shared with another package that's installed using a SW package.
3) You can use both but remember with the first you're going to remove the files.

RPM is very used in several distributions, but most of them share the package format only, the files contained will not likely be compatible with other distributions. That's why you will find RPM packages for RedHat, RPM packages for Mandrake, etc.
DEB is another package format very used, it was created as you may guess by Debian. As RPM a lot of distributions use it but it's differs from RPM because most of distributions that use it has a central repository of packages where you download from (I'm sure you heard about apt-get).
There are other package format, like Gentoo's, it's not a very popular format, but the distribution is.

There's no universal package format in Linux, and if existed it won't be compatible with all distributions since most put files in their prefered place.

Autopackage ( is trying to unify this, but it won't in a short term.

The universal package is always the source

Last edited by gbonvehi; 06-05-2005 at 10:56 PM.


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