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Date: Wed, 19 May 2004 19:40:29 +0200
From: Maciek Pasternacki <>
Subject: Re: Poldek, apt-get-like functionality for RPM

On Boomtime, Discord 59, 3170 YOLD, Solar Designer wrote:

>> If anybody wanted to test or use Poldek on Owl, it's out there and
>> it's usable (at least for me).  I think it would be good to
>> incorporate Poldek into the distribution and have indexes on ftp
>> mirrors -- it would ease upgrade of the system, mixing Owl packages
>> with locally rebuilt and third-party ones, and reduce bandwitch usage
>> on mirrors.  Upgrading to current owl-current always was hard for me
>> because I don't have full install (e.g. I don't use Postfix but
>> netqmail) and had to manually select packages to upgrade; Owl lacked
>> some automatic upgrade/install/package management tool and Poldek
>> works just fine.
> Oh, I don't think the current way of things is as bad as you make it
> appear.  "mirror -e RPMS" in lftp works quite well.  I don't see how
> you may be able to download less than that ...well, you may skip
> downloading newer versions of a package you don't use, but that's all.
> There aren't many packages in Owl which one may want to not use, --
> most are essential to the system.

Sometimes I don't want/need to keep full copy of all packages on the
system; for modern hardware it's not that much, but one of Owl's
features I appreciate is how it runs on older, slower hardware where
sometimes keeping whole mirror of distro locally would be overkill.

For some systems I might also prefer not to have any development
packages because I just don't need them; production systems can be
binary-only as well, and compiling packages can be handled on another
machine; that's quite a few packages.

> As for upgrading Owl while keeping your local alternatives to some of
> Owl's packages, most of the time it isn't that hard.  You can edit
> installworld.conf to use "-F" instead of "-U" in FLAGS and it will
> work most of the time.  Yes, sometimes entirely new packages are added
> to Owl and are required for the new version of Owl, -- in those cases
> you do need the "-U".  But most of the time "-F" is fine and it won't
> try to install an Owl package which you had removed previously.

Yes, you're right, but on the other hand, Poldek is just more
comfortable to use when I use packages from multiple sources.
Upgrading system with Poldek also ignores new packages by default, so
-F indeed is a good alternative, but there are also packages from
other sources (say, RH6 updates or some packages built by software
vendor for RH6, or my local packages, which I build once and install
on more machines); it's easier to keep up-to-date and automate
upgrades or notifications about new versions of software when all
sources are handled in uniform way by one program.  It's not matter of
functionality, it's a matter of convenience (using RPMs is also matter
of convenience -- Slackware runs on plain tarballs and they don't
complain). ;)

> But getting us Poldek or apt-get or yum isn't out of consideration.

I'd appreciate if Poldek or other package manager with similar
functionality (I don't know yum, and used apt only on Debian, where
its functionality is still less than Poldek's (and handling source
packages by apt... yuck.  Debian automation, scripts and formats are
*terribly* kludgy) and as far as I know apt supporting RPMs is still
a bit of hack).


__    Maciek Pasternacki <> [ ]
`| _   |_\  / { I tell you this, no eternal reward will forgive us now
,|{-}|}| }\/                                           for wasting the dawn! }
\/   |____/                                             ( Jim Morrison )  -><-

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