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From Ariel Partners LLC <>
Subject Re: Ant and RPM integration-- Has anyone looked into it?
Date Tue, 23 Jan 2001 23:44:30 GMT

Having as few prerequisites as possible should clearly be one of the
top priorities for a tool such as RPM.    But we should think carefully about
this issue.

To illustrate:

We at Ariel Partners have been serious power users of gnumake since
we started up shop about a year ago.  We develop software and web sites
using Java, XML, and related technologies and must produce releases for a
wide variety of customers/projects/applications/platforms/environments 
The great thing about gnumake is that you can do nearly anything with it.
However, we noticed two major problems:
1) The rules files, even when meticulously pretty-printed, commented, 
formatted, etc.
   are very difficult for anyone but a "blue adept" to read and understand.
2) gnumake pretty much requires an environment such as cygwin to function 
on win32 machines

We found that it was much easier:
a) to find people to maintain java subclasses of "Task" (ant) than gnumake 
rule files
b) to have a Java Runtime Environment (JRE) as a pre-requisite than a posix 
environment (e.g. cygwin)

To a beginning user of RPM on Solaris/Win32/Linux (we use all three), the 
of building RPM for Solaris or Win32 is a bit daunting.   To build ant, I 
only have to install a JRE.
Many Java-based tools actually bundle a JRE so that they are entirely self 

Obviously, I am attacking the problem more from a developer's than a system 
administrator's point
of view.  RPM as it is configured today has some basic requirements.  You 
need a kernel
and some libraries and a shell to run it, right?   The philosophical 
question we have to
ask ourselves is how low-level a tool or layer do we consider a JRE and are 
we comfortable
being totally dependent on one (like ant is....)


--Craeg Strong
Ariel Partners LLC

At 02:56 PM 1/23/2001 -0800, you wrote:
>On Tue, 23 Jan 2001, Perry Hutchison wrote:
> > > > RPM is crying out to be rewritten using Java and XML IMHO ;-)
> > >
> > > Why on earth would anyone want to do that?
> > >
> > > Real Programmers (TM) don't use Java :)
> >
> > More to the point, RPM is part of the installation process and
> > should therefore have as few prerequisites as possible.  I'm not
> > convinced that having to set up a JVM (and, I suppose, a browser)
> > before installing the OS would be a Good Thing.
> >
>I do agree with that though I don't see why you would need a browser.
>Rpm-list mailing list

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