[Top][All Lists]

[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

binary packages

From: Paul Kienzle
Subject: binary packages
Date: Sun, 15 Feb 2004 01:14:27 -0500


Sometimes I suggest to people that they should try
octave+octave-forge for doing something, and I would
like the process of trying it to be as painless as possible.
Up to date binary packages maintained for various
operating environments would help enormously.


        Dirk does a wonderful job of keeping the octave
        and octave-forge Debian packages up to date.
        We need equally dedicated folks for other platforms.


        Hopefully this will evolve into something as successful
        as Debian is at providing a central place for getting
        useful software without pain.  I understand it is also
        apt-get based.

        octave-forge/admin/RPM has spec files for octave-forge.
        I don't know where the spec files for octave reside, but
        they could also reside there.  Then it is a matter for
        someone from the Fedora community to periodically
        build the packages.  This should be a painless process
        since Dirk and the Debian build process will have already
        worked out many of the system architecture issues.

Red Hat 9,8,7, Suse, Mandrake:
        Do we need separate spec files and builds for these
        systems, or will the Fedora build suffice?  If fedora is
        insufficient, is there a community site people trust where
        we can put platform specific builds?  If not, we can always
        put them on the octave-forge site, along with dependencies
        that are unavailable in the base systems (e.g., gnuplot, fftw,
        hdf, ...).

Windows 98, 2000, XP:
        Two approaches here:  one is a cygwin package approach,
        the other a separately installed binary.   My own preference
        is for a separately installed binary which can optionally
        install into an existing cygwin environment.  A number of
        base packages must be integrated into the windows build,
        particularly qhull (for geometry toolbox), ginac+cln+gmp
        (for symbolic), fftw (for faster fourier transforms), hdf5 and a
        pluggable replacement for lapack+blas so that we can
        supply separate atlas-enhanced builds for various architectures.
        A lot of the work is done, it just requires a dedicated person
        to spend a month or so improving the build, then a bit of
        time each release to build a new package.

Mac OS X 10.2, 10.3:
        Similar to windows, there are presently packages for fink,
        for darwinports and standalone in various states of
        repair.  My own preference is again for a standalone
        binary which doesn't depend on much else so that getting
        someone up and running is simply a matter of dropping
        the binary package somewhere in the Applications directory
        and dragging it to the dock.  Again a lot of work needs to be
        done on sundries to make sure the OS X package can use
        qhull, ginac, fftw, hdf5, etc.  I don't know if we need separate
        binaries for 10.2 and 10.3.  I don't know if veclib is always
        available and sufficient, or if we need to support a variety
        of Atlas-enhanced libraries.  I don't know if there is a standard
        place where the community can post such binaries, or if
        octave-forge is the best place to host them.

IRIX, SunOS, Solaris, HPUX, AIX, ...
        These systems are comparatively rare and tend to have
        savvy administrators who don't mind the occasional
        ./configure; make; make install.  Unfortunately octave
        requires --enable-shared on ./configure in order to get
        octave-forge to work, so this process is not as easy as it
        could be.  Also, gathering the prerequisites (qhull, ginac,
        fftw, hdf5, etc.) can be challenging.  If interested parties
        want to keep up-to-date binaries for these systems, they
        can certainly live beside the Windows packages on octave-forge.

Getting all these binary packages into shape and keeping them
up to date is much too big a task for anyone who only works on
Octave in their spare time.  Fortunately, we have a community
of users on various systems eager to volunteer!  So how about it?

Paul Kienzle

Octave is freely available under the terms of the GNU GPL.

Octave's home on the web:
How to fund new projects:
Subscription information:

reply via email to

[Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread]