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GUST: Generates Ur Slackware Tagfiles

Not anymore fresh enough to enjoy the fun of a manually tuned Slackware Linux tagfiles set, but definitively too experimented to run a full install? maybe GUST could put some little sugar in your Slack mug...

Table of content

What's the matter, daddy?

When you begin with Slackware, you are often advised to perform a full install of it. This advise has its amount of wisdom, mainly because it avoids dependency annoyances during your first steps, but once you're familiar with the system it totally losts its interest. Then, you generally look to get a more compact system exactly suiting your needs, and are by the way rapidly drawn to consider the tagfiles.

The tagfiles are just a set of plain text files saying to the Slackware's setup the packages that should be installed. They are named tagfile and are located among the packages, into the slackware/'s sub-directories of each install CD. When you install Slackware, the setup let you choose a Tagpath install method, which asks you to give the path of an arborescence reproducing the slackware/'s one, but just containing the alternative tagfiles you want to use. You theorically produce theses ones by copying and editing the original ones: here is the point where GUST helps you.

As a matter of fact, it is tedious to manually maintain a tagfile distribution from release to release, because these ones don't ship exactly the same packages. Moreover, you sometimes have to do it for several systems with different needs, which make things really tricky to achieve. Instead of that, GUST allows you to setup what you need in one single file, which is checked to speed up updates, and can be divided in little section you can then precisely select just from the command line.

If you are looking for a concrete application of GUST, you can take a look at the Richard Harris' sous-marin project.

Come on, save my soul...

GUST is released under the very friendly terms of the MIT/X11 license. It is written in POSIX AWK, so it should work with any decent implementation of the language (the GNU AWK provided by Slackware is one of them). Below, you can get the latest source archive:

The version of the archive gives two informations: in roman numbers the revision of the command itself, in arabic numbers the release of Slackware it is by default applied to. If the last matches the one you use, you can directly download the Slackware package. Otherwise, choose the sources and use the configure script to select or add the release(s) you need.

Maybe I can fix things up, so they'll go...

The README file inside the archive explains you how to install GUST, and you should find all you need to plenty use it in the shipped gust.1 manual.

If for any reason (bug report, fix, suggestion, feedback, question, and so on...), you need to contact me (Seb), use this address (in English or in French): sbb(a)tuxfamily*org (replace "(a)" with "@" and "*" with ".").

Slackware is a registered trademark of Patrick Volkerding and Slackware Linux, Inc. GUST is not a part of the Slackware Linux project and is not endorsed by it to any degree.