[CentOS] software installation - good practice

Nicolas Thierry-Mieg Nicolas.Thierry-Mieg at imag.fr
Wed Nov 11 20:43:01 UTC 2009

Carlos Santana wrote:
> Howdy,
> I tend to try out many open source apps/packages - games, editors to
> media tools. I have a bad habit of downloading and extracting source
> in the /var/tmp directory and then doing configure-make-install
> process. I am not sure of best practice (good practices) to be
> followed when installing any software. For example how and where to
> keep the src. Any comments and/or resources would be really helpful.

I would say first reflex is to look for it in your usual configured 
repos, eg rpmforge if you use it.
Then look in other centos repos that you only activate and use for 
specific packages.
Then try to find an rpm anywhere that is built for your centos version.
Then look for an srpm and try to rpmbuild it, installing any deps from 
your usual repos.
If all that fails, I try to compile from source as a regular user, and 
just symlink the resulting binary(/ies)  from /usr/local/bin.
As a last resort fall back to the other suggestions, eg make install as 
root using --prefix, use checkinstall, etc...

The main point is that rpms are always preferable imho.

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