installing source rpm packages (.src.rpm) via yum and yumex?

Todd Zullinger tmz at
Thu Feb 7 00:24:24 UTC 2008

Aaron Konstam wrote:
>> And, for what's probably the zillionth time on this list, it is
>> never desirable to install or build source rpms as root.  Instead,
>> install and build as a normal user.  You can use the handy
>> rpmdev-setuptree script from the rpmdevtools package to create the
>> directory structure and config file needed for this.  See the draft
>> building packages guide for more info:
> 1.Just to be sure, why is this superior to building the rpm as root?
> Is it because the compiling this way cannot destroy your system?

Yes.  If you build packages as root it is incredibly easy to hose your
system.  All it takes is a minor error in the rpm spec file or the
Makefiles of the software you are building.  Many spec files include a
command to wipe the build root prior to installing (as in rm -rf).

I don't think this is still the case, but in the past I believe the
build root defaulted to / if it wasn't set elsewhere in the spec file
or the rpm config.  Imagine %{buildroot} = / and rm -rf %{buildroot}.

So, for many reasons, it's just not good practice to build packages as
root.  IMO, it would be nice if upstream rpm or the fedora packages
made it harder to do this -- at least spewing a warning about it when
you did it.

> 2. But you still need to install the binary rpm as root don't you?

Yes, to install rpms you do generally need to be root.

Todd        OpenPGP -> KeyID: 0xBEAF0CE3 | URL:
Hang in there, retirement is only thirty years away!

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