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Linux: Building RPMs without root access

Question: I'm trying to build a RedHat package (RPM), but I don't have root access to /usr/src/redhat. Is there a way that I can build an RPM without having root access?

Answer: There is a simple trick to building an RPM without having root access. You can build it in your home directory. To do this, place a file in your home directory called .rpmmacros.

The contents of the .rpmmacros is: (You will need to replace jsmith and Joe Smith with your own information.)

%_topdir /home/jsmith/rpm
%_tmppath /home/jsmith/rpm/tmp

%_signature gpg
%_gpg_name Joe Smith
%_gpg_path ~/.gnupg
%distribution RedHat Linux 9
%vendor RedHat

Next, you need to create a file called .rpmrc also in your home directory.

The contents of the .rpmrc file is:

buildarchtranslate: i386: i386
buildarchtranslate: i486: i386
buildarchtranslate: i586: i386
buildarchtranslate: i686: i386
buildarchtranslate: athlon: i386

Finally, you will need to create the directory structure that the RPM system requires.

To do this, execute the following commands:

mkdir ~/rpm
mkdir ~/rpm/BUILD
mkdir ~/rpm/RPMS
mkdir ~/rpm/RPMS/athlon
mkdir ~/rpm/RPMS/i386
mkdir ~/rpm/RPMS/i486
mkdir ~/rpm/RPMS/i586
mkdir ~/rpm/RPMS/i686
mkdir ~/rpm/RPMS/noarch
mkdir ~/rpm/SOURCES
mkdir ~/rpm/SPECS
mkdir ~/rpm/SRPMS
mkdir ~/rpm/tmp

These commands will create a directory tree in your home directory.

Now, when you need to build an RPM, the system will use the rpm directory instead of the usual /usr/src/redhat directory.