Build rpm packages with the rpmbuild command

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This article is about how to build rpm packages with the rpmbuild command and a SPEC file. The example is based on SuSE 11.3 x86_64. However, other distributions should work same or similar. In this article, we will create a program that outputs "hello world", add a makefile to build it, and create a SPEC file to package the software as an RPM file.

Contents

Dependencies

First install the rpmbuild package. To do open a console and enter

yast -i rpm-build

The program

Here is how we create our program, hello world:

cd
mkdir hello-1.0
cd hello-1.0
cat >main.c <<EOF
#include <stdio.h>

int main()
{
  printf("hello world");
}
EOF

The Makefile

To build our program, we need a makefile. Here is how we create it:

cat >Makefile <<EOF
all:hello

hello: main.c
        gcc main.c -o hello

install: hello
        mkdir -p \${prefix}/usr/local/bin
        cp hello \${prefix}/usr/local/bin
EOF
sed -i "s/        /\t/g" Makefile 

The SPEC file

The SPEC file is needed to create an RPM package out of your software. It will be named hello.spec and reside in the folder /root/hello-1.0. Create it like this:

cat >hello.spec<<EOF
Summary: hello greets the world
Name: hello
Version: 1.0
Release: 1
License: GPL
Group: Applications/Tutorials
Source: hello.tar.gz
URL: http://www.staerk.de/thorsten/
Distribution: SUSE Linux
Vendor: -
Packager: Thorsten Staerk

%description
hello greets the world

%prep
%setup

%build
make 

%install
make install prefix=\$RPM_BUILD_ROOT

%files 
%defattr(-, root, root)
"/usr/local/bin/hello"
EOF

License is a free-text field. You can enter what you want. Same goes for Group. Source is the file that will be stored in /usr/src/packages/SOURCES.

Build the rpm

Now we have the SPEC file and the software. First we store the source in the "appropriate" place:

cd
tar cvzf hello.tar.gz hello-1.0
cp hello.tar.gz /usr/src/packages/SOURCES

Then, build it with the command

rpmbuild -ba hello-1.0/hello.spec

You will find your ready RPM under /usr/src/packages/RPMS.

Test the rpm

  • let's see if the RPM really exists
# ll /usr/src/packages/RPMS/x86_64/
total 8
-rw-r--r-- 1 root root 4856 Feb 13 17:03 hello-1.0-1.x86_64.rpm
  • let's install it
# rpm -ivh /usr/src/packages/RPMS/x86_64/hello-1.0-1.x86_64.rpm
Preparing...                ########################################### [100%]
   1:hello                  ########################################### [100%]
  • list what files it contains
# rpm -ql hello
/usr/local/bin/hello
  • find out if it remembers the information we gave it
# rpm -qi hello
Name        : hello                        Relocations: (not relocatable)
Version     : 1.0                               Vendor: -
Release     : 1                             Build Date: Sun Feb 13 17:03:57 2011
Install Date: Sun Feb 13 17:21:42 2011         Build Host: tweedleburg.site
Group       : Applications/Tutorials        Source RPM: hello-1.0-1.src.rpm
Size        : 11847                            License: GPL
Signature   : (none)
Packager    : Thorsten Staerk
URL         : http://www.staerk.de/thorsten/
Summary     : hello greets the world
Description :
hello greets the world
Distribution: SUSE Linux
  • let's see if we can remove it
# ll /usr/local/bin/hello 
-rwxr-xr-x 1 root root 11847 Feb 13 17:03 /usr/local/bin/hello
# rpm -e hello
# ll /usr/local/bin/hello 
ls: cannot access /usr/local/bin/hello: No such file or directory
  • yes we can :)

Clean up

To clean up, run

rm /usr/src/packages/SOURCES/hello.tar.gz
rm -rf /usr/src/packages/BUILD/hello-1.0

See also