Posts Tagged ‘gentoo’

Rebuild all your live ebuilds

Sometimes it’s necessary to install a *-9999 ebuild (= build the package direct from subversion, git, etc. repository). But portage only installs it once and never reinstalles it, which sucks.

I tried http://paludis.pioto.org/ once, which has a feature to rebuild such ebuilds in regular intervals.

What I do now is run this command once in a while:

emerge -av1 `eix -Ic | grep 9999 | cut -d' ' -f2`

which essentially uses eix to get all installed ebuilds that have a the version number 9999 and gives it to portage. Enjoy.

UPDATE: portage 2.2 supports new special sets (e.g. world, system), so now emerge -av1 @live-rebuild will do.


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KDE 4.1.0

I’ve already written about KDE 4.1 Beta but now, since 4.1 is released for good, some updates:


for Gentoo users

# It's not in the main tree yet, and probaly won't come there
emerge -av layman autounmask # if you don't have them already
layman -a kdesvn-portage
autounmask kde-base/kde-meta-4.1.0 # Adds all necessary entries to package.keywords/unmask
emerge -av kde-meta

If you have a beta version installed, you will have to delete everything first! Some ingenious maintainer has changed the slot names of all packages and so portage thinks it has to install everything in a new slot… let’s just say collision-protect ist gonna have a lot of fun!

Extra apps?

Some apps (all apps in the kde-misc category) are not part of the official KDE packages, so they lag behind. What about them?


There is a 4.1 port, but it is quite unstable. If you’re using the 3.x version, disable all USE-Flags so it only pulls kdelibs-3.5. If you need a trashcan also activated the kde flag, so it pulls kioslaves too.


Amarok 2 (alpha) is completly useless. All it’s features are stripped down, even changing shortcuts isn’t working properly…


Yakuake 2.9.3 is ported and works quite well. I’ve noticed that I can’t move tabs with Ctrl+Shift+Left/Right anymore, but that’s all.


  • Most of the apps are stable now, no random carshes in KMail or Kopete anymore 🙂
  • GTK engines are back (emerge x11-themes/gtk-engines-qt-1.1)
  • Input Actions don’t work at all, and this will not be fixed in 4.1 (see Bug report)

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KDE 4.1 Beta

Finally, I switched to KDE 4! I said goodbye to my KDE 3.5, which served me well over the years, and now I enjoy it’s more futuristic successor. After failing to make friends with the KDE 4 alpha/beta/.0 releases, 4.1 (4.0.82 to be exact) meets my needs.

Plasma is almost stable, only crashes once a day or so 😉 Also KMail and some other stuff that was missing in 4.0 is back. The build-in desktop effects aren’t killing X anymore and some apps have new features.

I’m not really a fan of the whole plasma/oxygen/vista-clone design but I can live with it till someone makes more colourfull alternatives. Qt4 is more important than my old styles 😉

Some upsides

  • Qt4 + SVG + kde-look.org build-in everywhere
  • Okular!
  • KMail works, Kopete works, the classic application laucher is back (but I have grown to like Kickoff) and “Run command” has previews.
  • An enhanced KTeaTime

Some downsides

  • Plasma: slow, unstable, you can’t even move icons on your panel, …
  • Desktop effects are slow and not perfect
  • GTK apps don’t cooperate very well
  • User-defined global shortcuts don’t work at all
  • KMail crashes while renaming IMAP folders… 🙂

(These are problems that I have. I have seen some of the features work on other machines.)

4.1 on Gentoo

I have Kubuntu too on my notebook, but I haven’t checked it out yet. It’s propably more itegrated and stuff, but I’m a gentoo user!

What you need to get 4.1 running on gentoo is layman and if you lazy a tool called autounmask:

layman -a kdesvn-portage
autounmask kde-base/kde-meta-4.0.82-r3
emerge -av kde-meta

This should work fine, you probably have to remove qt-4.3 manually and remerge 4.4; make sure you have all Qt4 libs (eix qt -C x11-libs), otherwise a lot of apps won’t merge.

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So here they are:

  1. it’s free
  2. it’s faster
  3. it’s secure
  4. it’s simpler
  5. it feels good

1. Cost

Maybe it isn’t the primary reason why to use a Linux server, but I just don’t get why people pay loads of money for a lot less freedom. Linux is free and will always be free. A Linux system administrator costs the same as any other sysadmin. Use Linux and give the money you save to charity!

2. Speed

There are many arguments and “Facts” out there why one server system is better than the other one. I guess in the end it depends on which software packages are used. But as a general fact: You can easily customize/optimize your Linux apps, unlike proprietary software equivalents. You can start by compiling everything with all the powerful CFLAGS that your CPU supports. You can really use 64bit CPUs system. And it’s much easier to change one line in a config file, with your favorite editor, than work yourself through slow GUI windows, restart the whole system and hope you clicked the right check box.

3. Security

There are nearly no viruses known for Linux. It was always a multiuser, network-connected OS. From Day One it was designed to be safe. The firewall (iptables) is embedded directly into the hardware abstraction and blocks the bad guys before they even reach the application layer. Do I have to say more?

4. Simplicity

Package managing is easy as hell. Type in two commands and you system is up-to-date. (e.g. Gentoo: emerge—sync && emerge -uDN world or Ubuntu: apt-get update && apt-get upgrade).
You need about 10 – 20 iptables rules to make a basic, but powerful and customized firewall. OK, iptables is a little confusing when you see it the first time, but once you got it, you can write your own firewall in an hour max. And it works! Stable!
You also have a clear and transparent way to manage you startup services and/or handle them during runtime.
These are just some examples.

5. I love Linux

It just feels good to have an OS not made by a bunch of greedy bastards! It is made by people like you and me. And it is transparent: there are no backdoors that allow the company and/or the government to spy on you. And if someone tires to add backdoors/spyware/rootkits/etc., well it’s open-source, so there are always some people who browse through the code of a new app (out of curiosity or because they want/need to know how it works) and at least one of the will find the dubious code before the app gets spread out around the world.

P.S. When I say Linux, I mean of course GNU/Linux.

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