Subject: (Fwd) Re: Packages (Re: xntpd)
To: None <tech-install@NetBSD.ORG>
From: Hubert Feyrer <>
List: tech-install
Date: 01/05/1996 02:45:28
I received this comment, and i think it's too interresting to keep it in
private mail. Hope you don't mind if i forward this to the public. :> - HF

--- Forwarded mail from

From: David Leonard <>
Subject: Re: Packages (Re: xntpd)
To: (Hubert Feyrer)
Date: Fri, 5 Jan 1996 09:50:53 +1000 (EST)

What about the question of architecture dependent binaries? for people
who like to nfs serve their binaries across their multiple netbsd platforms :)

Perhaps a package install thing that puts (builds) the actual binaries
(like `mdir') somewhere like:

	/usr/local/bin/mdir -> ../../mtools-2.07/archbin/mac68k/mdir

or should that be the other way round:

	/usr/local/bin/mdir -> ../../mtools-2.07/bin/mdir
	/usr/local/mtools-2.07 -> archbin/mac68k/mtools-2.07

	/usr/local/archbin -> arch/mac68k/NetBSD/1.0A/

...welcome to symlink city for multiple architectures, and multiple packages
and multiple everything :) (reminds me of dec unix)

while i'm here i may as well say that i'd prefer package dirs to be put
somewhere other than in the top of /usr/local/ - i like the sound of

OR scrap all that and go back to using PATH

how about having /etc/profile source /usr/local/package/.setup or something
that gets modified each time a package is added/removed so that PATH and
MANPATH get updated correctly at login? that would save on a billion symlinks
(and inodes).. however users i know like to set their PATH from scratch
and rarely rely on the one passed from login & /etc/profile... but those
people would have a quick look at /etc/profile, then in /usr/local/package
and then be able to set it up themselves.

also in addition to having /usr/local/package/mtools-2.07, i'd like maybe
to see a symlink like
	/usr/local/package/mtools -> mtools-2.07
but i dont know what the pros and cons of that are... makes bug tracking
easier i think and would avoid changing too many symlinks like
	/usr/local/bin/mdir -> ../../mtools/mdir

well enough of my ranting... this is getting way too confusing

> ...
> > I myself use /usr/local/<pkg>-<vers>, e.g.:
> > >
> > > /usr/local/mtools-2.0.7
> > > /usr/local/X11R6
> > > /usr/local/netpbm-1mar94
> > > /usr/local/top-3.3beta
> > > etc.
> But serious folks: i remember the precious discussion (to be honest:
> fits better!) about packages on the amiga-list. Right now we seem to be at a
> point at where we've settled on the concept of packages being in
> /usr/local/<somediryettoname>/<pkg> and binaries, man-pages etc. available
> through symlinks to /usr/local/bin, .../man, etc. If someone has reasonable
> arguments against it, please speak up *now*, tell us and possibly tell us a
> other (better) solution!

David Leonard                            Project Officer, DSTC
The University of Queensland   

---End of forwarded mail from

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