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I want to use Gentoo's packages on Fedora. Is this possible?

EDIT: I meant that I want to use Gentoo's portage tree.

UPDATE: How about Ubuntu's packages on Fedora? Or Fedora's on Gentoo? Or any other distribution's packages/package manager on another?

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6 Answers

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Meh! Looks like alien does not support portage. I take it back.

But I'll leave the answer in case someone comes looking for Foo to Bar where Foo is not Gentoo...


You can try using alien to convert to the package to the local format and then install as usual.

However, there may be some issues with library versions, so this is not always without trouble and is sometimes very hard indeed.

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It is possible, although it will take quite a bit of work to get operational, and it won't be supported by either distro's teams generally. I only know it's possible because I've watched as a co-worker of mine did it one time merely to say he could/had.

As for the logistics of it, I think the init system differences is going to be one of the biggest hangup. The init system in gentoo is going to be completely different from the init system in fedora. As such, you'll have to either hack portage so that it will work with fedora's init system, or hack fedora to work with gentoo's. The other hangup you'll run into is that portage doesn't like dealing with software and packages that haven't been installed by portage to begin with.

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If you want to use portage to install packages as a user, have a look at Gentoo prefix. It works pretty well for me, but it also tends to need more space than I would like.

For system-wide package installation you should take into account that Fedora and Gentoo have totally different ideas about what is a package and how it should be installed -- actually way more different than the difference between deb and rpm files than can be converted and installed to some extent into other distributions. Save yourself the hassle and decide upfront what you want and then go with that.

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Theoretically yes, but the problem is that packages for another distro are tuned to work with other packages of that distro. Replace the packages far down enough over time and you may as well be running the other distro.

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you would have to maintain your own portage tree which has ebuilds that would work with the libraries that ship with fedora.

you might also be able to make the ebuilds download the source rpm's and then compile the packages and install them, but you proably woldnt want to start applying the gentoo patches to the source since that is what makes gentoo, gentoo, in the first place.

this has been done before with other kernels, and in those cases, they still built everything up around portage, so in the same way, you would have to write ebuilds for everything that is currently installed.

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It's certainly possible with Gentoo, using Gentoo Prefix

Incidentally, I just found out that there is an x86-winnt version of Gentoo Prefix, which might be interesting to try.

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