[PlanetCCRMA] newbie: installing non-planet software

Fernando Pablo Lopez-Lezcano nando@ccrma.Stanford.EDU
Wed Apr 14 11:51:02 2004

> After much experimentation, I have decided to base my system on the
> Planet (Red Hat 9).
> However, I am not what i think is a typical Planet user in that my
> computer needs to be a general multimedia workstation, as well as being
> a general admin tool. I don't see any live performances in my immediate
> future and the emphasis of my work is on the visual rather than the
> audio.
> My question is (sorry it took so long to get to this) What are the
> potential pitfalls of installing various non-planet software on this
> system? I am under the impression that I am not supposed to use multiple
> repositories in my apt sources list, but I really need software like
> Open office 1.1, a Java SDK, Qcad, Blender, and Scribus and the like to
> successfully migrate to Linux.

It is possible to use multiple repositories but in general there can be
incompatibilities between them (ie: a particular package in repository a
needs library c version x, but another package in repository b needs
library c version y and both are incompatible <the libraries>). 

> It's just a shot in the dark, but up to this point, I've been installing
> this software in the /opt/ directory. So far, so good.(touch wood).
> Is the Planet a bad move for me or will this be no problem? Any advice?

Planet CCRMA is never a bad move (ha ha ha, just joking) There are
exceptions, of course, for example it was not a wise career move for the
mantainer :-) ;-) :-)

There are a couple of things you can do to minimize the impact of what
you do:

a) if you install from source (ie: configure, make, make install) you
should probably use a different install root than /usr (or even
/usr/local), so that the package has no chance of messing up other
already installed software.

b) if you install from rpms either directly or through apt you should
never force an install (for example in rpm using the "--nodeps" or
"--force"). If the dependencies are not there chances are that the
package will not work correctly anyway, and by ignoring dependencies you
are effectively breaking the possibility of using apt (which will
complain about it and refuse to do anything). 

Probably Open Office should be fine. Java is not a problem (but I cannot
really redistribute it and that's why, for example, Jmax is not in the
repository and Java is not included). 

On the other hand I would be interested in "beefing up" what is
available through Planet CCRMA so any suggestions of open source
software packages will be considered (I just took a look at Qcad and it
could be potentially useful here at CCRMA, I think)...

-- Fernando