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NetBSD for the FreeBSD User: Customizations
Pages: 1, 2

The NetBSD "package tree" is stored on the ftp server as pkgsrc.tar.gz. I snagged a copy and unpacked it under /usr. It blew up into a very familiar-looking directory tree, with different software set up in different categories.



Eventually, a couple thousand package extractions later, I could make myself comfortable.

alpha: {108} cd /usr/pkgsrc/shell/tcsh
alpha: {109} make all install clean
"../../mk/bsd.prefs.mk", line 78: Could not find bsd.own.mk
Fatal errors encountered -- cannot continue
alpha: {110}

To my surprise, a locate bsd.own.mk gave me nothing, even after refreshing the locate database. I could be assured that bsd.own.mk wasn't on my system.

For my first real NetBSD problem, I applied the same tools that I use for FreeBSD. NetBSD has an extensive mailing list archive. A search for "Could not find bsd.own.mk" gives me an answer: "double-check that you have the comp.tgz set." I downloaded comp.tgz from the netbsd.org ftp site, copied it to /, and unpacked.

Once again, I tried to install tcsh. This time, a make all install clean zipped right through. I added a user account with a decent shell, logged out, logged back in, and entered the command su -m.

Other packages are installed in the same way, and they handle dependencies perfectly. Emacs installs gmake, just as I expected from FreeBSD.

Anyone who can administer a FreeBSD box should have no trouble with NetBSD packaging system. It's the same solid BSD core, with the added bonus of being cross-platform. It's a different project, with different goals, but if you need BSD on your palmtop or on that old PDP, NetBSD is your friend.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I have an SGI IRIS whose hard drive needs formatting.

Michael W. Lucas


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