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Re: portage vs yum

Kevin Kofler wrote:
> Portage:
> * parasites upstream projects for tarball downloads by default. Aside from
> the
> security concerns which have been raised elsewhere in this thread, this also:
> - steals bandwidth from upstream projects,
> - makes the user dependent on the upstream project's server being up (for
> every
> single upstream project) and still carrying the file they want (which isn't
> always the case, many upstream projects delete old versions, they don't have
> infinite webspace nor do they want people to download old buggy versions).
> So this really doesn't scale. It also doesn't comply with the GPL when
> distributing binaries. SRPMs carry the full source code.

Erm; No. Gentoo's portage mirrors have a "distfiles" directory that contains
copies of all source tarballs for current versions of Portage packages. When
one installs the package (via "emerge app-foo/bar" as root or similar), it
attempts to download the tarball from this distfiles mirror. Only if it fails
on multiple mirrors (or as is configured otherwise in /etc/make.conf) does
it attempt to grab the sources from the upstream download location.

> * has only limited support for uninstalling. The biggest problem is that
> there's no reverse-dependency tracking, you can unmerge a library and it will
> not know there are still programs depending on it which will be broken by the
> unmerge. This can be particularly bad on upgrades: when you upgrade a library
> to an incompatible version (new soname), it will just do it even when there
> are
> still packages depending on the old version, breaking those packages. And no,
> rebuilding everything (i.e. emerge remerge world) isn't really an efficient
> solution to this problem.

Not necessarily; Portage has a tool called "revdep-rebuild" which takes care
of rebuilding any package which no longer has proper dynamic library linkage.

> RPMs do allow you to build from source, that's what specfiles and SRPMs are
> for. Writing your own specfile is not fundamentally different from writing
> your own portage recipe.

I concur with this. The first few RPM packages that I created were based
quite heavily on Gentoo's ebuilds (not "recipes" - those are rPath/Conary)
for them. I still use them from time to time to help track weird/unexpected
Peter Gordon (codergeek42)
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