Re: RPM packages for afterstep-1.7.x versions

Andrew Sullivan (
Mon, 18 Jan 1999 14:08:18 -0500 (EST)

On Mon, 18 Jan 1999, Tony Nugent wrote:

> It should be (and it is for afterstep) compile-time configurable.
> With many packages you get the spec file to do "./configure
> --prefix=/usr" and then later on, "make install
> PREFIX=$RPM_BUILD_ROOT/<whatever>" to allow installation into a
> different root tree to allow for things like packaging as a binary
> rpm.  (Afterstep does it slightly differently, but it amounts to the
> doing same thing).  It avoids things like having to unnecessarily
> apply ugly patches to the sources to get this changed.

I agree with you here, but . . .

> It isn't (shouldn't be) an issue at all.  The use of /usr/local/ is
> compile-time configurable as it should be.
> After an almost trivial edit of the .spec file for 1.6.6 (to change
> the "prefix" define from /usr/local to /user/ , I have afterstep not
> installed in /usr/local - just as it should be for rpm packages.
> So, for the FAQ, all that needs to be said is that if you don't like
> the default install location, it's easy to change it.  Just:

. . . but completely disagree with you here.

The problem is that RPM has different advantages for different types of

For experienced users, the RPM system allows the easy administration you
note here.  In the next version of the FAQ, I will include your
suggestions about changing the default location (as I think you're right
that the location of AS is not actually consistent with the usual
practices for RPMs), as long as it's ok with you.

But I don't think the RPM should be moved by default.  I have already been
buried by questions from new Red Hat users who couldn't find the upgraded
binaries after moving to 1.6.6.  Changing things yet again is a recipe for
confusion for many new users.  The very advantages of RPM for experienced
users is (I think) a disadvantage for many inexperienced users, because
those users end up not really knowing or understanding what they have
done.  As a result, basic support takes up a whole lot of time.  I'm happy
to do it, but I'm not happy about arranging yet more work for myself!


Andrew Sullivan | (better)| (worse)
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