The end of the multiarch era?
Posted Jul 13, 2006 11:56 UTC (Thu) by dmantione
Parent article: The end of the multiarch era?
I couldn't disagree more with the author. Of course his reasoning is a
fallacy, but apparently the author disagrees with backwards compatibility
regardless wether RPM works correctly.
All Linux users befefit greatly because of the backward compatibility of
the kernel. You can simply upgrade your kernel without fear of breaking
your system. No such compatibility exists for many user space
applications. I'm quite sure most readers here have seen the famous glibc
missing symbol messages.
Sure, recompiling is a possibility for open source applications. I'm
quite confident few people have systems where they compiled all
applications themselves. Nor do I have the idea that people desire to
recompile all their application when they upgrade a library.
Lastly /lib64 was a very smart choice. It is mandated by the x86_64 ABI
http://www.x86-64.org/documentation/abi-0.96.pdf, so complain to the
authors about it.
/lib64 is based two ideas:
* It must be possible to install 32-bit RPMs on both i386 and x86_64
systems without change.
* Source code can be changed to use /lib64, binaries cannot. So, to allow
existing rpms to install on x86_64 systems, they should be able to find
their libraries in /lib.
This does not just benefit developers of closed source software, but also
any open source project that distributes binaries.
Try our Free Pascal i386 RPM and note that just magically works on your
Linux system, regardless which libc you use or wether you use i386 on
That is how software is supposed to work.
Besides multiarch not just benefits the user who wants to use software,
but also the developer who wants to support both 32 and 64 bit. I wish
multiarch a long and healthy future.
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