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alien (1)
  • >> alien (1) ( Linux man: Команды и прикладные программы пользовательского уровня )


    alien - Convert or install an alien binary package


     alien [--to-deb] [--to-rpm] [--to-tgz] [--to-slp] [options] file [...]


    alien is a program that converts between Redhat rpm, Debian deb, Stampede slp and Slackware tgz file formats. If you want to use a package from another linux distribution than the one you have installed on your system, you can use alien to convert it to your preferred package format and install it.  


    Despite the high version number, alien is still (and will probably always be) rather experimental software. It's been under development for many years now, but there are still many bugs and limitations.

    Alien should not be used to replace important system packages, like init, libc, or other things that are essential for the functioning of your system. Many of these packages are set up differently by the different distributions, and packages from the different distributions cannot be used interchangeably. In general, if you can't remove a package without breaking your system, don't try to replace it with an alien version.  


    For converting to and from rpm format the Red Hat Package Manager must be installed.
    For converting to (but not from) deb format, the gcc, make, debmake, dpkg-dev, and dpkg packages must be installed.
    Note that when converting from the tgz format, alien will simply generate an output package that has the same files in it as are in the tgz file. This only works well if the tgz file has precompiled binaries in it in a standard linux directory tree. Do NOT run alien on tar files with source code in them, unless you want this source code to be installed in your root directory when you install the package!


    Alien will convert all the files you pass into it into all the output types you specify. If no output type is specified, it defaults to converting to deb format.
    file [...]
    The list of package files to convert.
    -d, ---to-deb
    Make debian packages. This is the default.
    -r, ---to-rpm
    Make rpm packages.
    -t, ---to-tgz
    Make tgz packages.
    Make slp packages.
    -i, ---install
    Automatically install each generated package, and remove the package file after it has been installed.
    -g, ---generate
    Generate a temporary directory suitable for building a package from, but do not actually create the package. This is useful if you want to move files around in the package before building it. The package can be built from this temporary directory by running ``debian/rules binary'', if you were creating a Debian package, or by running ``rpm -bb <packagename>.spec'' if you were creating a Red Hat package.
    -s, ---single
    Like -g, but do not generate the packagename.orig directory. This is only useful when you are very low on disk space and are generating a debian package.
    Specify the patch to be used instead of automatically looking the patch up in /var/lib/alien. This has no effect unless a debian package is being built.
    Do not use any patch files.
    Specifiy a description for the package. This only has an effect when converting from the tgz package format, which lacks descriptions.
    -c, ---scripts
    Try to convert the scripts that are meant to be run when the package is installed and removed. Use this with caution, becuase these scripts might be designed to work on a system unlike your own, and could cause problems. It is recommended that you examine the scripts by hand and check to see what they do before using this option.
    -k, ---keep-version
    By default, alien adds one to the minor version number of each package it converts. If this option is given, alien will not do this.
    -h, ---help
    Display a short usage summary.


    Here are some examples of the use of alien:
    alien --to-deb package.rpm
    Convert the package.rpm into a package.deb
    alien --to-rpm package.deb
    Convert the package.deb into a package.rpm
    alien -i package.rpm
    Convert the package.rpm into a package.deb (converting to a .deb package is default, so you need not specify --to-deb), and install the generated package.
    alien --to-deb --to-rpm --to-tgz --to-slp foo.deb bar.rpm baz.tgz
    Creates 9 new packages. When it is done, foo bar and baz are available in all 4 package formats.


    Alien recognizes the following environemnt variables:
    Options to pass to rpm when it is building a package.
    Options to pass to rpm when it is installing a package.


    When using alien to convert a tgz package, all files in /etc in are assumed to be configuration files.

    If alien is not run as root, the files in the generated package will have incorrect owners and permissions.  


    Alien was written by Christoph Lameter, <>.

    deb to rpm conversion code was taken from the Martian program by Randolph Chung, <>.

    Alien has been extensively rewritten (3 times) and is now maintained by Joey Hess, <>.  


    Alien may be copied amd modified under the terms of the GNU General Public License.




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