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5.5. 与其它软件包共存

Debian packages are not the only software packages used in the free software world. The main competitor is the RPM format of the Red Hat Linux distribution and its many derivatives. Red Hat is a very popular, commercial distribution. It is thus common for software provided by third parties to be offered as RPM packages rather than Debian.
另一方面,alien 可以把RPM软件包转换成Debian软件包,反之亦然。
$ fakeroot alien --to-deb phpMyAdmin-2.0.5-2.noarch.rpm 
phpmyadmin_2.0.5-2_all.deb generated
$ ls -s phpmyadmin_2.0.5-2_all.deb
  64 phpmyadmin_2.0.5-2_all.deb
You will find that this process is extremely simple. You must know, however, that the package generated does not have any dependency information, since the dependencies in the two packaging formats don't have systematic correspondence. The administrator must thus manually ensure that the converted package will function correctly, and this is why Debian packages thus generated should be avoided as much as possible. Fortunately, Debian has the largest collection of software packages of all distributions, and it is likely that whatever you seek is already in there.
Looking at the man page for the alien command, you will also note that this program handles other packaging formats, especially the one used by the Slackware distribution (it is made of a simple tar.gz archive).