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The emacs editor contains its own tutorials and help files: Type M-x help to begin. These include a learning-by-doing tutorial. There are plenty of emacs tutorials out there, some of which are written from the beginner's point of view.

Several books on emacs are available, including:

■ Gnu Emacs Manual: For Version 22 by Richard M. Stallman (Free Software Foundation, 2007)

■ An Introduction to Programming in Emacs Lisp by Robert J. Chassell (Free Software Foundation, 2004)

■ Learning GNU Emacs by Debra Cameron, James Elliott, Eric S. Raymond, Marc Loy, and Bill Rosenblatt (O'Reilly, 2004)

■ Writing GNU Emacs Extensions by Bob Glickstein (O'Reilly, 1997)

The official GNU emacs documentation is also online at: www.gnu.org/software/emacs/ manual/index.html.

Many examples of emacs configuration files can be found on the Internet, including a large collection at: www.dotemacs.de/.

There is an emacs Wiki (a user-editable web page with a lot of good emacs information) at www.emacswiki.org.

Finally, you need to be able to make simple emergency edits with vi because there may be circumstances in which vi is all that is available to you (such as when you're running the rescue system). You may come to know and love vi , but depending on your character, you may go to the other extreme and make emacs your editor of choice. Both editors have far more functionality than is covered here, and both are certainly worth further study.

Vi king w.ihPackagcs

riginally, there was no such thing as a package in Linux. It was a dark time for people who have a penchant for an organized, manageable, and above all, clean system.

A package is a file containing all the files of an application, library, or anything else with data in it that can be installed, removed, queried, and managed as one entity. The RPM format and the tools around it were developed in the mid-1990s by Red Hat. SUSE and a number of other Linux distributions were quick to adopt it. RPM is the leading packaging system on Linux, and is used both by Red Hat and SUSE, but it is by no means the only one: Debian and its derivatives including Ubuntu use a different system for managing packages.

' RPM originally stood for ''Red Hat Package Man

; ^'J..-1 ager,'' but is now officially just the ''RPM Package Manager.''

In the dark days, when you needed to install new applications, you downloaded the source code, untarred it, configured the build environment, and compiled it. When it came to installing the application, you had no way of telling what file belonged to what application. This led to orphaned files existing on a system when you wanted to remove the application or upgrade it.

Enter RPM to solve this issue. RPM uses a central database that contains information about all software installed on the system. You can query this database to find out what packages are installed, their versions, and also what files they own. If you want to upgrade the package, you can download the RPM and simply tell RPM that you want to upgrade the software

IN THIS CHAPTER

What is RPM?

Installing an RPM

Querying an RPM

RPM and dependencies Removing an RPM

Creating an RPM

Installation sources

1-Click installation rug and zypper to a later revision. This helps to control and curb orphaned files and provides a quick and easy way to see what software is installed on the system.

This chapter covers package maintenance and manipulation using RPM. RPM is a very powerful system, not only to install and manage packages, but also to automate the build process of software to produce a binary RPM.

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