Installing software in user friendly way

Henning Kilset Pedersen henning at
Tue Jul 12 12:00:16 UTC 2005

On Tue, 2005-07-12 at 07:52 -0400, Stephen R Laniel wrote:
> On Tue, Jul 12, 2005 at 01:44:33PM +0200, Henning Kilset Pedersen wrote:
> > tar -zxvf /home/renato/blahblah.tgz
> We need to sit down with users and teach them the easier
> ways to do things in Ubuntu and Debian. Here are two quick
> points that should make your life easier:
> 1) You almost never need to compile source code.
> 2) You almost never need to install a package using tar and
>    gzip.
> The whole point of using a distribution is to avoid doing
> these things. You need to do them sometimes -- say, for
> specific customizations -- but rarely. If you ever find
> yourself compiling from source or unpacking a tar file, take
> a few minutes and figure out whether it really needs to be
> that hard. Ask on this list, or google.

Agreed. Like you said in another post, there's also a .deb package for
Opera - but since it's a commercial package, there is still the work of
getting the package from the opera website etc. I much prefer to use apt
and/or synaptic for my package/software needs. 

But in some cases - you just have to go the old-school way. 

Just today, I've been having problems getting Ruby on Rails to work, for
instance. Rails doesn't like the preinstalled ruby framework aquired via
apt-get from the universe repository. And rails itself doesn't exist as
a package for Ubuntu. It exists for debian-unstable, but that package
doesn't work on ubuntu.

So packaging is a nice concept, and made even better via centralized
repositories now common in all the distributions. But unfortunately, in
the real world, you're likely to find exceptions because not everyone
wants to play nice.

> This reminds me that I want to teach a class on How To Get
> The Most Out Of Linux for new users. Separate thread ...

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