Re: Keeping gnumeric current on Fedora Core 3

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Richard Bumby wrote:
| Fedora Core 3 comes with a 1.2.x version of gnumeric, but the
| requirements listed on the gnumeric site suggested that the requirements
| for the latest 1.4.x were satisfied.  To preserve the sanity of the
| system, I decided that I should build an RPM although I have never done
| a project this large in rpm.  To guide this task, I got the Source RPM
| for the version that was installed so that I could examine the
| gnumeric.spec.  The comparison between that file and the one in the
| 1.4.x tarfile was instructive:
| (1) You say, "don't even think about making a gnumeric-devel", but they
| create one anyway.
| (2) They seem to exclude optional features to avoid having to require
| them for the binary RPM.
| (3) You built a manpage and installed it in the right place, but forgot
| to include it in your list of files for the package.
| Other than that, it was clear that both files were aiming to do the same
| thing.
| Before starting, I installed all packages mentioned on your site, in the
| README file of the tarfile, or as a requirement in the spec file.  These
| three lists weren't completely in sync, though most of the differences
| appear to be among optional features.  I think I managed to get a
| successful build, but I haven't tested it yet.
| The requirements for the 1.5 include newer versions of some packages
| than are included in Fedora.  Can these packages be upgraded without
| breaking something?  (I ask because upgrading the freetype2 library on
| my previous system broke gnomeprint.)  Since the 1.5 series is supposed
| to be a "testing" version, can it live beside a stable 1.4.x that is
| used for production work?
| --RT Bumby
|  Rutgers Mathematics Department

Just an FYI, between FC4 and FC3, gnumeric was moved from Core to Extras
and the current FC4 version of Gnumeric is 1.4.3.  You should be able to
grab the FC4 source RPM and recompile it on FC3 without any problems.
There are usually good reasons for disabling optional features in the
Fedora RPMS (which *should* be noted in the changelog or in comments,
but aren't always).  If you're going to rebuild RPMS on a Fedora/RedHat
system it's almost always preferable to use the spec file from an
earlier version of the official package than the one included in the
tarball (for a lot of reaons, not the least of which is that the tar
ball spec files frequently don't see a whole lot of love).

That being said, it should be easy to install the development version of
Gnumeric into a seperate prefix so that it doesn't interfere with the
packaged stable version already on the system. There are many options
for solving the parallel install problem, depending on how much work you
want to do and what you're ultimately trying to achieve.  If you just
want a development version of Gnumeric to play around with, you should
be able to configure gnumeric and all of its supporting libraries to
install into "/opt/gnumeric-foo" and run it from there with relatively
little pain; Gnumeric may or may not integrate well with the rest of the
desktop by doing that, but it should work.

The most work, but "cleanest", solution is to go through and package
gnumeric and all of its supporting libs so that they are all parallel
installable with the vendor packages.  I haven't looked into doing this
with gnumeric, but it is likely to be a lot of work for little (real)

- --
Shahms E. King <shahms shahms com>
Multnomah ESD

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