I need a package manager for GNU/Linux (preferably source based) to install packages in my home as unprivileged user on a Debian system (not sure if squeeze or wheezy).

What I tried:

  • Compiling it myself: Gave up after installing twenty dependencies and encountering some problems that surpassed my GNU/Linux skills.
  • Gentoo-Prefix: My first problem were two broken links in the bootstrap script, after fixing them, the bootstrap failed reproducably when attempting to install stage3.
  • Home Arch Install (HAI): Didn't seem to work, maybe outdated.

Did anybody succeed installing gentoo prefix in the near past and knows how to do it or have an alternative to achieve what I want?

Thanks in advance for your suggestions.


I just tried unpacking debian packages via dpkg-deb -x but this is worse than compiling it myself. When compiling it myself, I can at least link against other self compiled libraries, so debian packages aren't an option!

  • Have a look at this answer on Unix & Linux.
    – terdon
    Sep 18 '13 at 17:37
  • @terdon Thanks, I'll give it a try as soon as I have access to the computer again (tomorrow)! But I don't think this would work very well as soon as the packages get more, especially complex ones and ones with many dependencies.
    – FSMaxB
    Sep 18 '13 at 17:46
  • I begin to get the impression that there is no portable packaging system with an option equivalent to a configure script's --prefix=~ -- this is a shame, but I can see all sorts of reasons why it's a problem nobody (myself included!) wants to tackle. Sep 18 '13 at 18:22

Gentoo prefix is working now! As it seems, gentoo prefix is still maintained, but I'm lucky the system I need it for is based on squeeze and not wheezy or Ubuntu>11.04, because they are not supported due to multiarch patches to their toolchains which makes it impossible to build vanilla gcc!


pkgsrc is a nice platform independent ( different UNIX and unixoid systems ) that works without root rights. My experience so far is that it is working much better than Gentoo Prefix.

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