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Re: Fik question about Debian source packages

On Sun, 10 Nov 2002 10:59:58 +0000, Colin Watson <cjwatson@debian.org>

>Read the FAQ:
>  http://www.debian.org/doc/FAQ/ch-pkg_basics.en.html#s-sourcepkgs
>  http://www.debian.org/doc/FAQ/ch-pkg_basics.en.html#s-sourcebuild

>Yes, you downloaded the right files.
Cool. Thanks!

>> Please: what is the convention for Debian package names by which I may
>> distinguish a source package?
>The source package is called, er, whatever the source package is called.
>It's only the file types that differ. You're probably being confused by
>memories of source RPMs, which are different.
I was indeed. OK.

>Why don't you just use apt-get rather than reinventing the wheel by
>hand? It really isn't difficult to get it up and running; use apt-setup.

and on Sat, 9 Nov 2002 22:39:19 -0500, Stephen Gran
<steve@lobefin.net> wrote:
>What do you mean by "apt is not set up"?  I think if you can set up apt,
>the rest of these problems will go away.  Do you mean that you don't
>have good entries in your sources.list, or are you getting some errors?

Sorry, I didn't mean I was having difficulty in setting up apt per se.
My current "task list" is:
1 - Get Linux-compatible modem, first one since installing Debian
about 2 years ago (DONE)
2 - Set up X and mozilla, test using web pages on hard drive (IN
3 - Set up networking & modem: lots of stuff to read, figure out and
probably not get right first time (TO DO)
4 - Test on something reasonably familiar, which operates fully
interactively, by browsing web with mozilla & seeing what goes wrong
5 - Once I'm reasonably sure that it's all working, then I'll feel OK
about setting up "automatic" internet software (eg. apt) which is
non-interactive and so might go wrong without me being aware of it,
possibly with expensive waste of connection time until I notice. (TO

If I try rescheduling this I'll end up with too many (IN PROGRESS) and
a mental stack overflow will probably result.

and as I said before:
>>Also I'm scared of it. <snip dependency nightmare>  I worry that if I
>>do get apt up and running, I'm gonna have to spend a week online
>>downloading half my system again as soon as I want a new package.

The dependency nightmare makes me even more scared to apt-get
anything. I wanted mozilla; I ended up downloading at least as much
again of other stuff, which I didn't want cos what I had was working,
getting as far removed from a browser as sysvinit!!! and still with no
prospect of reaching the leaves of the tree. What for? A few bits of
code which mozilla wanted.

If I apt-get anything on a system which has been offline for 2 years,
will I end up continuously online for the next 2 years? It looks like

If anything, I'm even more inclined to stick to building everything
from source by hand. That way, if something wants some bit of code
from another package which I don't have [the right version of], I can
lift that code and give it to my wanted package without disturbing
that which is already working OK. Or simply decide that that code
implements some feature I'm not interested in and #define it out. As
long as the libraries are set up OK and the package writer hasn't used
undoecumented symbols or anything daft, it seems that most real
dependency problems will then show up at build time, before I execute
any code or disturb my existing system.

I've been hacking C a lot longer than Linux. When a non-English
speaker posts to this list by mistake, I can usually get some idea of
what they're on about; without necessarily being able to provide a
formal translation, I might nevertheless recognise the problem they're
asking about. I find C source code is similar - in some ways easier as
I know more of the words - but other aspects of Linux throw me back
too often to the documentation, which, while admirably comprehensive,
is a bit scattered, really hard to find stuff in - especially when you
know the concept you're looking for but don't know what it's called -
and suffers from the universal problem that a computer screen is much
harder to read than a book, especially when trying to use the same
screen to type stuff in. Reading through the source, the meaning of
the code explains much of what I need to know about some
Linux-specific thing. Coming from the "outside", that same thing
requires an extensive doc-hunt to give me the same understanding.

I have much more patience messing about offline than online, because
offline doesn't cost anything. When I run out of patience I do stupid
things. By running out of patience with downloading stuff to solve a
dpkg dependency nightmare I ended up nuking my system (see "Manual
ldconfig required HELP!!!"). That's the last time I try that! Other
options: apt-get or build from source by hand. Building from source by
hand is cheaper and therefore stands less chance of frustrating my
brain out of action.

Anyway, thanks for answering my question about what Debian source
packages are called!


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