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Req. for Advice -- Library Compatibility

From: Dennis Newbold
Subject: Req. for Advice -- Library Compatibility
Date: Wed, 24 Oct 2001 10:17:39 -0700 (PDT)

Hi Ncurses Maintainers,

     This is not about a bug in ncurses.  But I do need some advice
from someone who has been working with it for awhile and is somewhat
familiar with differences between versions.

     About a year ago I downloaded an rpm file for Sniff+ 3.2, which
was at that time freely available for Linux users.  For various reasons
which I won't go into, I never got around to installing it until now.
Now, I am on Redhat Linux 7.1, and when I try to install the Sniff+ 3.2
rpm file, I get an error that it needs libncurses.so.4.  My version of
Linux is now using libncurses.so.5.2

     There are a few different things I could do, but I'm not sure
which one is best, which is why I'm asking for your advice:

  1. download the newest version of Sniff+, which probably uses the
     newest version of libncurses.  This option is not available, as
     Sniff+ version 3.x is no longer available on the internet, as
     WindRiver Systems has purchased it from Takefive.com, and is
     selling version 4.0 at $2500 a pop.

  2. Override rpm and tell it to ignore dependencies.  It may work,
     but there may be incompatibilities in the interface that may
     cause run-time failures that could be confusing and frustrating.
     I hope you can give me some feedback as to the viability of this

  3. Download ncurses-4.2-18.i386.rpm from Redhat's ftp site and
     install it.  But I'm not sure if its possible to have two different
     versions of libncurses.so.xx on the system at the same time,
     nor how this would affect other programs which currently run
     with the libncurses.so.5.2

In short, I don't know enough about the differences between
libncurses.so.4 and libncurses.so.5.2, nor about how versioning of
shared libraries works, and I'm a little concerned about painting
myself into a corner or creating an unstable system environment
for all the other programs on my disk.

Any advice you could offer would be appreciated.  Thanks alot,
and have a nice day.

Dennis Newbold

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