[Haskell-cafe] Distributing Linux binaries

Ketil Malde ketil at malde.org
Wed Mar 11 05:25:31 EDT 2009

Lyle Kopnicky <lists at qseep.net> writes:

> I tried to make a Debian package and couldn't figure it out,

Me too.  I don't know why .debs are so hard to get right, most if not
all the necessary information should be in the .cabal file.  Maybe I'm
overly naive here.

> but maybe that's overkill. 

I don't think so.  Don S. has more or less singlehandedly ported
all of Hackage to Arch Linux.  We really should have a central .deb
repository for Hackage that could serve as a basis for Debian-based
distributions as well as a more cutting-edge alternative for stuff
that is not yet in your favorite distro.

> GHC itself has some kind of tarball for the
> binary distributions, one for Debian and one for Red Hat. How would
> I make such a package and what would go into it? 

> There's only one executable, so it shouldn't be too complicated.

> I figure the main issue on Linux is that when you compile it, it's linked to
> specific shared libraries.

I often distribute binaries simply by distributing the executable

Usually, it will work on most contemporary Linuxes, and if it doesn't,
you often have compat packages of libraries that fixes it.  If you
in addition pass -optl-static to GHC, it will link - with some caveats
- statically, improving the chances of your binary working in
uncharted territories. 

If I haven't seen further, it is by standing in the footprints of giants

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