Peter Garrett peter.garrett at optusnet.com.au
Sun Mar 27 00:33:27 UTC 2005

On Sat, 2005-03-26 at 16:43 -0500, Art Alexion wrote:
> Peter Garrett wrote:
> >On Sat, 2005-03-26 at 11:05 -0500, Frank McCormick wrote:
> >  
> >
> >>Hi
> >>
> >>  A couple of messages on this list lately prompt this question:
> >>
> >>Often I want software (such as Sylpheed, or mhwaveedit) in a version
> >>that's not yet available from the regular repositories. I have been
> >>dl'ing the source, and doing a make, make install but this seems to be
> >>to be defeating the fine record keeping of the Debian system.
> >>Whats the **recommended** way of doing this; using dpkg ???
> >>I am still running Warty...as I don;t want to upgrade until the release.
> >>
> >>Thanks
> >>
> >>Frank
> >>
> >>    
> >>
> >
> >You might try installing "checkinstall" - usage is quite simple: you do the usual
> >
> > `./configure && make ` then follow with
> >
> >` sudo checkinstall`
> >
> >this makes a deb and installs it for you. The deb can be uninstalled
> >with sudo dpkg -r <deb>.
> >
> >There are more elegant approved ways, but this works quite well for me,
> >at least
> >  
> >
> I used checkinstall successfully with Red Hat to build RPMs from source
> and install.
> Is it more reliable than alien (which I have [unsuccessfully] only tried
> once)?
My impression is yes, checkinstall is more reliable. RPMs tend to be
rather incomplete from a Debian-distro viewpoint, and there can always
be conflicts in what dependencies they have and so on. Compiling, on the
other hand, *demands* that you get the deps together, or the configure
script just complains and refuses to complete. 

`apt-get build-dep`  is very useful here: there are also ways to keep
everything "in house" with debian/ubuntu source packages, which means
you don't have to use checkinstall at all ( see the excellent howto at


with particular attention to 


or just do

sudo apt-get install apt-howto

Checkinstall is good when you know you've got all the -dev packages
lined up ...  

Hope this helps


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