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explanation of rpm

Posted on 2011-03-16
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Last Modified: 2012-08-14
I am learning linux and would like to install some programs. I tested installing R, with

./configure
make
make check
make install

That install seemed to go well and is working. However I want to install yum now. After downloading the source i looked at INSTALL and see

run make install, if you're a masochist.

it then says that your better off making an rpm. Since I have never made an rpm and dont have any idea how to, I started looking for an .rpm package of yum that I could install. However I cant seem to find one. I am not sure if I am just not looking in the right place, or if I am going about this in the wrong way.

Am I able to just download a .rpm file from the internet and install it, or do you have to build an rpm for every install package? Should I be looking for rpms in a different place?  ( I am using Red Hat 4)



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Question by:ryan80
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by:DerekStone
DerekStone earned 500 total points
ID: 35151852
You'll want to use a prepackaged RPM unless there's some pressing reason not to. Perhaps the RPM's in Red Hat's (or Fedora, etc.) repository aren't the version you need, you need to recompile them for some specific option, etc.

Search for the package by doing a "yum search httpd". Then do a "yum install httpd".

The configure/make/install process is better left for times when a suitable RPM isn't already available.
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by:ryan80
ID: 35152008
where would i find the prepackaged rpms?
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by:ryan80
ID: 35152019
yum is what I am tyring to install
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torimar earned 500 total points
ID: 35152088
Here are two guides for installing yum on RH 4:
http://www.pinoytux.com/linux/howto-install-yum-on-rhel-4
http://techtrouts.com/how-to-install-yum-on-red-hat-enterprise-linux-4/

But I think you are making it far more difficult for yourself than necessary.
RH 4 is very old; I can only imagine you use it to learn Linux following a course in a book that also gave you the installation media.

But there are more modern and free versions of Linux to use these days, with yum etc pre-installed, and good repositories with current software. Use CentOS, which is exactly what RH is, only free and community-based: www.centos.org

On a normal Linux installation these days, you will hardly ever have to configure, make and install your software from sources, so doing that complicates your introduction to Linux.
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by:Hugh Fraser
Hugh Fraser earned 500 total points
ID: 35152109
You can find an rpm for yum at http://www.rpmfind.net.

There's a reason for the warning about doing a "make install". RPM packages include much more than just the files needed for the package; they also include dependency information that's used not only to determine what other packages are needed, but also what is provided in the package. The rpm (and by extension yum) programs use this dependency information to ensure that things don't get broken. The information is kept in a database that's used to automatically download needed packages (as in yum install), and to prevent the removal of packages that are needed.

There is an rpmbuild command that will build an rpm from a source distribution. Check for a ".spec" file for information.

It's worth reading about how rpm works if you're heading down this path.
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by:svs
svs earned 500 total points
ID: 35152156
yum is included with RHEL4 (I'm assuming that is what you are using).  If it's missing, you can try reinstalling it with up2date.
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by:ryan80
ID: 35152246
Thanks,

I will go ahead and load a copy of CentOS.
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by:ryan80
ID: 35206647
Thanks for the explanation
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