Newbie to linux and a question

Linux for blind general discussion blinux-list at
Sat Dec 15 13:08:00 UTC 2018

On 15/12/2018 13:33, Linux for blind general discussion wrote:
> Don't forget source distros like Gentoo or LFS. You can install your own package managers on those (and gentoo has one called portage), but your primary means of building packages is from source code.
> And even if you're not interested in doing that, installing from source has become vastly simplified over the years; your average user need only run:
> ./configure
> make
> sudo make install
> and this will install a program suitable for 99 percent of users' needs.
> I won't touch on building things like apache, mysql and other database managers, or the linux kernel itself I wouldn't recommend a newby tackle those, anyway. But the above commands are good enough for just about any userland package.

I disagree.

Doing this:
1) Often fails for lack of dependencies, not easy for a newbie to solve.
2) That makes hard to uninstall a software.
3) That makes more difficult to remember which software are installed.
4) You won't be warned of a security issue with the installed version.
5) More generally you deprive yourself of all the benefits of the
packages management system that your distribution provide.

Don't get me wrong: as a distribution maintainer and packager I am used
to compile software manually. But after quick tests I always make
packages that can be handled by the package management tools, to ease
users' life. 

If actually there is no pre-built package for your distribution for a
specific software, better learn how to make one yourself, which won't
happen often if you use a distribution like Debian.
Generally your Linux distribution provides tools to help you do that.

Didier Spaier
Slint distribution

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