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Old 05-16-2010, 04:50 PM   #1
LXer
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LXer: Do Package Managers Spoil Us?


Published at LXer:

Do systems break less with easier resolutions due to package managers? Does it mean that the new user of today won’t be as experienced as the old user of yesterday?

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Old 05-16-2010, 06:13 PM   #2
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I'd say systems break more.
E.G. If you remove one `recomennded' (but not required) dependency, it will remove critical system components if you do not watch it.
 
Old 05-16-2010, 06:29 PM   #3
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The Slackware way is the only way
 
Old 05-16-2010, 07:27 PM   #4
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I think repetitive tasks like dependency management are better done by computers than people.

More and more people come to Linux without learning about dependency management; I know I never did, and I started out with Red Hat's RPM system years ago.

But I don't see that as a bad thing; a lack of dependency management is a terrible way to learn how a system works — if you want that, try the Linux From Scratch book, which actually explains what each component does rather than just what other components it uses — and the time that would be spent learning how to make the system work can then be invested in whatever the user is trying to do. The thing that matters is that the entire system is open and free, and the user can learn how all of it works if they want to.

I can't imagine how hard it must be for an enterprise systems manager with hundreds of Slackware servers to keep them up to date with security patches, without at least doing something to manage dependencies.
 
Old 05-17-2010, 10:48 AM   #5
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I think they absolutely do break more with a package manager. Never had any problems using installpkg. Had many many problems with Ubuntu and Debian and Fedora, many times a single bad package incapacitated the system. Package managers don't spoil you, they break your system.
 
Old 05-17-2010, 11:32 AM   #6
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Never had Debian break because of installing a package. An upgrade possibly if you do not watch the packages that are going to be upgraded/removed/installed and if you do not watch any known bugs with apt-listbugs.
 
Old 05-17-2010, 01:48 PM   #7
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In Debian it is more rare than the others, but it happened once.
 
Old 05-17-2010, 02:07 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by H_TeXMeX_H View Post
I think they absolutely do break more with a package manager. Never had any problems using installpkg.
Isn't installpkg one of the package management utilities used on Slackware?

Quote:
In Debian it is more rare than the others, but it happened once.
That sounds strangely like a proven fact. Something tells me it's actually an opinion (perhaps not even one that is a result of personal experience).

From TFA:

Quote:
Since Slackware has no real dep resolving package manager it’s one of the last ‘true’ Unix like Linux versions out there.
I never understood this. I've seen various people claim that Slackware is the "most UNIX like of the Linux distributions". What does that even mean? Take a look at package management on Solaris. Solaris is UNIX. Take a look at the Solaris INIT system. FreeBSD, NetBSD, OpenBSD (etc.) are descendants of BSD UNIX. Take a look at their package management systems.
 
Old 05-18-2010, 04:12 AM   #9
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I'm talking about dependency resolution, it's true that Slackware also has a package manager, but no dependency management like the other distros.
 
Old 05-18-2010, 05:57 AM   #10
easuter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rjlee View Post
I can't imagine how hard it must be for an enterprise systems manager with hundreds of Slackware servers to keep them up to date with security patches, without at least doing something to manage dependencies.
I manage a Slackware server and although I can't comment on what it would be like to manage hundreds of them, installing security updates for me has been as easy as

Code:
slackpkg-update
slackpkg upgrade-all
For packages installed via the SlackBuilds website, sbopkg provides a function to search for updates and build and install them automatically.
As a matter of fact, I like to know exactly what is installed on the server, and why, so doing dependency resolution by hand isn't an issue for me.

Edit: I also forgot to mention that unlike Debian (and the *buntus), Slackware doesn't split upstream software into a bazillion different packages, which for me is a plus when managing dependencies.
Consider installing Qt4 on Debian (found in a forum post) vs installing it on Slackware:

- Debian:

Code:
apt-get install libqt4-assistant libqt4-core libqt4-dbg libqt4-dbus libqt4-designer libqt4-dev libqt4-gui libqt4-help libqt4-network libqt4-opengl libqt4-opengl-dev libqt4-qt3support libqt4-script libqt4-sql libqt4-sql-ibase libqt4-sql-mysql libqt4-sql-odbc libqt4-sql-psql libqt4-sql-sqlite libqt4-sql-sqlite2 libqt4-svg libqt4-test libqt4-webkit libqt4-webkit-dbg libqt4-xml libqt4-xmlpatterns libqt4-xmlpatterns-dbg libqtcore4 libqtgui4 qt4-demos qt4-designer qt4-dev-tools qt4-doc qt4-doc-html qt4-qtconfig
Maybe there is a "meta" package for this, or some easier way? I don't know, please enlighten me.

- Slackware (version 13's "default" Qt package is Qt4):

Code:
slackpkg install qt

Last edited by easuter; 05-18-2010 at 06:39 AM.
 
  


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