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Date:      Wed, 29 Feb 2012 03:22:44 +0100
From:      Polytropon <>
To:        David Walker <>
Subject:   Re: Simple question about pkg_add ...
Message-ID:  <>
In-Reply-To: <>
References:  <> <> <>

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On Wed, 29 Feb 2012 12:41:46 +1030, David Walker wrote:
> Hi Polytropon.
> I did have a look inside and I did pkg_add -v which gives enough
> information combined with my meagre knowledge to guess that it had
> something to do with source.

A port (as you can find it inside the archive) is a "recipe"
for dealing with sources, e. g. where to obtain then, how
to compile, where to install to and so on. The ports collection
of the FreeBSD OS is used to deal with handling software
based on sources: configure, patch, build, install, deinstall,
upgrade and similar tasks.

See "man ports" for a better explaination.

> I'm so unfamiliar with pkg_add I'm not sure if that is normal.

The pkg_add utility installs programs from binary packages.
Those packages are created by compiling a port - typically
with its default options. Those packages are built for the
FreeBSD ports collection and made available by the FreeBSD
team. "External packages", created outside the world of
FreeBSD ports, are possible.

See "man pkg_add" for details.

> I'm very new here.
> Certainly it's not in a suitable format for pkg_add to deal with.

Correct. A pkg_add package typically contains compiled stuff,
i. e. binaries, and a "packaging list" for installation and
later removal. Additional tasks can also be scripted.

> I guess pkg_add is the preferred option for firmware installation.

It's used to install programs (or libraries) to the FreeBSD
system. The use with firmware is also possible. Basically,
ports (from source) and packages (precompiled binaries) have
the same purpose: Get things installed.

If the maintainer would compile the port (that he provided
for download) and give the proper URL of the result in the
manpage, pkg_add would work as intended.

> I'll contact the maintainer.

That would be a good idea as the description you quoted from
the manpage is technically not correct.

Option 1: Provide a pkg_add-able package.

Option 2: Provide instructions on how to deal with the port.

Magdeburg, Germany
Happy FreeBSD user since 4.0
Andra moi ennepe, Mousa, ...

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