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RPM - What's New in Version 4.0? 15

rafa asks: "Red Hat has recently upgraded their RPM system from the 3.x to 4.0 in the the Red Hat 7.0 distribution. The RPM Web site hasn't been upgraded since sometime in 1999. What has changed since RPM 3? What improvements have been made, and why did they chose to break compatability?"
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RPM - What's New in Version 4.0?

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  • by pastie ( 80784 ) on Monday October 09, 2000 @12:35AM (#721546)
    Well, actually, an RPM is just a tarball with dependency information. How primitive.

    Debian packages, on the other hand, are tarballs with dependencies and configure/uninstall scripts. Now there's a tarball you can take home to mom

    RPMs can have configure/install/uninstall scripts, and more besides. And it has done since version 2 (probably before then, I can't remember right now).

    I like Debian too, but please know what you are posting is actually correct before proclaiming Debian as having the best packaging system (which it may have, but not for this reason).

    Many of the features of older versions of RPM can be found in the freely downloadable book `Maximum RPM' at [], where there is some documentation. But not for rpm 4.0, as the poster mentioned.

  • about tarballs vs RPM, I must agree with this.
    tarballs are not only for real-men though, I'm a newbie and I found tarballs works more consistently compared to RPM.
    I was even once had to reinstall Linux due to RPM screw-ups. Since then I only use tarballs or Source RPM.
  • You really should try Debian.. No package messup will ever be so great as to require a reinstall (unless you delete your package state and all your backup, then a reinstall might be less trouble).

    You really have no match for apt with pure tarballs.
  • I have heard information that rpm4 is supposed to support checking of installed libs. This means if they were or were not installed from an rpm. This portion does seem to be supported I have tested this on redhat 7.0 with success. I am not sure of other 'new features' although I have been looking for some info. As far as breaking compatability I am not sure what you mean. They are backward compatable being that you can install 3.x rpms with no problem. You cannot on the otherhand install the 4.x rpm under a 3.x system if this is what you mean. This is typical of alot of software not just rpm.

  • Actually, I think rpm uses cpio rather than tar.

    Think of cpio as the bastard mutated spawn of dd and cp :-)

  • Why did you have to reinstall?
  • I was having trouble installing new RPMs, particularly those from Rawhide, because they were packaged with the new versions of RPM. Upgrading to rpm-3.0.5 will allow you to install rpm-4 packages.
  • You're trying to remove a package named "openssh-2.2.0p1-1.i386.rpm" which is actually the filename the RPM comes with, not the package name. To find out what the package name is, you could go "rpm -qa | grep openssh" or " rpm -q openssh".

    I'm fairly sure that "rpm -e openssh" will remove the openssh package.

    If you have an older openssh package, try "rpm -Uvh openssh-2.2.0p1-1.i386.rpm" which will upgrade it for you.


  • You want this as the uninstall command:

    # rpm -e openssh

    Whenever you uninstall a package, all you need is the base package name.
  • by Dr. Evil ( 3501 ) on Monday October 09, 2000 @04:37PM (#721555)

    Can a user install packages without being root? I mean, most of the time you would install as root, but for some cases, like games, applications or the like, you should be able to install yourlelf... into your own home directory.

    I've had to use tarballs to install IRC clients, Zmodem protocols, games and more on remote systems.

    Without user-mode installations, it is just one more reason to give mobile users root access to their own systems.

    I'm not a big fan of package management, it has caused me to rebuild more systems than manually solving dependencies has ever. As soon as somebody starts using the phrase "You'll have to rebuild if your corrupt your XXX" where XXX != "Filesystem", it generally means that XXX is a bad idea.

    I have to get around to reading that Maximum RPM book...

  • Boy do I feel dumb. No, really.

    Guess I should RTFM next time, eh?



  • by Black Parrot ( 19622 ) on Monday October 09, 2000 @07:46PM (#721557)
    > Can a user install packages without being root?

    Two answers:

    1) At work, I have "sudo" access for rpm, so I can install RPMs without being root.

    2) There is a --relocate option that will let you install packages in non-standard locations, i.e. your personal directory tree. I'm not positive, but I believe the package must be designed for relocatability for this to work. There may also be issues with updating the RPM database, but there is also --dbpath for pointing to an alternative database. (I have never actually done any of this, but perhaps a Web search would turn up some examples.)

  • It seems to me that each user should have his
    own RPM database. So, that if I want to, say,
    install a game in my 'cathryn' directory, wouldn't
    have to go to root to do it. Ideally every package, could have a 'root' install for everyone, and a 'non-root' install for an individual user, I'd think. Am I missing something?
  • RPMs can have install and uninstall info too. There are places for post and pre instalation. It also can save your config files if they have changed. I find lots of .rpmsave files on my system. I've had to many problems using debains package management tool.

    I don't want a lot, I just want it all!
    Flame away, I have a hose!

  • add 'compress' in there, and you'd be dead-on!

"My sense of purpose is gone! I have no idea who I AM!" "Oh, my God... You've.. You've turned him into a DEMOCRAT!" -- Doonesbury