Subject: Re: Packages (Re: xntpd)
To: None <>
From: Antti P Miettinen <>
List: current-users
Date: 01/04/1996 16:56:56
>Or are we going some commercial o/s way and have a link farm to /usr/local/bin
>- shudder.

What's so bad about symlinks? When all binaries are under one
directory uninstall is very easy. Even for packages which are not
prepared for uninstalling. You just remove the directory and do a find
for broken symlinks and remove them. Absolutely lovely. I have always
used this scheme for the installations that I have done.

My strategy goes as follows:

- configure the package to live under /v/package-1.2.3
- in directory /v create a symlink to where ever there's disk space
  this week
- make install
- Go to /usr/local and create symlinks in bin, man etc from
  /v/package-1.2.3/{bin,man} etc

With this scheme I can for example have several versions of gcc with
several versions of libg++ around even though neither of these
packages is designed with several versions of both in mind. To make a
particular gcc use a particular libg++ one just has to make some
symlinks. With this scheme one can also move the packages around as
one pleases. One just needs to update the link under /v.

I do not often install stuff that requires updates to config files and
I don't have a solution for that problem, but IMHO any automatic
installation should not touch any of the files under /etc for example.
Maybe symlinks could be used here too. Something like making symlink
from /v/package-1.2.3/etc/start to /etc/init.d/sumpting for packages
that need to be started at boot. If for example something needs to be
added to /etc/services I think this should be left to be done

So there - you are allowed to puke on this scheme also :)