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Re: HELP (RPM - what package a file is from)



Anne Wilson wrote:
> Yes, it all sounds very grand, doesn't it.  But if all my efforts to
> understand it, over a period of more than 6 years, have failed,
> there is something not too smart about the situation.  Why does the
> 'help' for rpm give so many options that appear not to work at all?

The options work, but they must be specified correctly.  For example,
the --provides and --whatprovides options are "select-options" which
should be specified after the -q or --query option.  The man page does
show this IMO.

SYNOPSIS
   QUERYING AND VERIFYING PACKAGES:
       rpm {-q|--query} [select-options] [query-options]
[...]
   select-options
        [PACKAGE_NAME] [-a,--all] [-f,--file FILE]
        [-g,--group GROUP] {-p,--package PACKAGE_FILE]
        [--fileid MD5] [--hdrid SHA1] [--pkgid MD5] [--tid TID]
        [--querybynumber HDRNUM] [--triggeredby PACKAGE_NAME]
        [--whatprovides CAPABILITY] [--whatrequires CAPABILITY]

So, just as using rpm -a by itself doesn't list all packages, rpm
--provides does not list the things provided by a package.

> Why do we find something that appears to work - for a time - then
> doesn't any more?

I don't recall that rpm --provides by itself ever worked.  In any
case, the current documentation matches the current behavior, which is
reasonable.  Even more so for F10, since one of the major features for
the release was the update to rpm-4.6.

> You tell me how anyone is supposed to sort the wood from the trees
> in that help file.

Honestly, I think the help file isn't too bad.  rpm is a complex tool,
so describing it's usage is a bit complex as well.

> I suspect that the man pages and help file haven't been updated for
> years.

Well, rpm itself hadn't been very actively maintained for years
either.  So it's not a shock if the man page didn't get much care.  If
there are specific things which are wrong in the man page, this is
something for which to file bugs upstream (where I'm sure patches
would be gladly accepted :).

-- 
Todd        OpenPGP -> KeyID: 0xBEAF0CE3 | URL: www.pobox.com/~tmz/pgp
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
There is no pleasure in having nothing to do; the fun is in having
lots to do and not doing it.
    -- Mary Wilson Little

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