Archive for November 13th, 2007

Software Reminders

A useful tip for anyone who runs or administers a Unix or Linux computer: Sooner or later, you’re going to install something outside of your distribution’s package system, probably from source. When you do, leave the original sources around somewhere. Where doesn’t really matter; /usr/src, /packages, /sources, or whatever. And, yes, you can do a “make clean”; all you really need to do is keep a copy of the original libwhatever2-1.4.2_1.i386.tar.gz file. Why? So that when you, or someone else, is trying to troubleshoot some strange software problem, be it two weeks or two years from now, they’ll be able to tell just what is installed. It’s easy to figure out what’s been installed from your distribution’s packages, or what PERL packages are installed, but identifying what has been installed from sources – especially libraries – can be a royal pain in the posterior. So, do yourself, and all the admins-for-hire out there a favor, and keep track of everything you install – for which just keeping the sources is probably the easiest option. Trust me, you, or someone else, will thank you one day…

Published in: Geekiness, General | on November 13th, 2007 | Comments Off on Software Reminders