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Getting GNOME For Red Hat 5.1 Systems

This guide describes two ways to install GNOME on your Red Hat Linux System:

Installing GNOME from the Red Hat CDROM

For Red Hat 5.1 systems the easiest way to get GNOME is on the CD. There is a /gnome directory on the first CD of RH 5.1 which contains a release of GNOME. This is not the latest version, but sufficient to get an idea of what GNOME is all about. There are instructions in that directory for installing GNOME on your system.

Installing GNOME from FTP

GNOME is a rapidly developing project, and as a consequence there are regular releases of software for GNOME. These releases are "cutting-edge", so to speak, and are released because we think people want to see what kind of exciting things are going on. Since this code is in the process of being written, it can have rough spots. Don't let that stop you from grabbing it and trying it out - just keep in mind that something that doesn't work this week will probably be fixed in the next month or so.

Step 1 - Updating Red Hat Linux

There are some updates for Red Hat Linux which you will need to insure GNOME will work properly. Check the
RH 5.1 jpeg errata page for the required updates. You may not need to download all of the updates, just the ones for the packages you have installed. Use the rpm command to see if you have a package currently installed:
rpm -q gimp
will tell you if you have the package 'gimp' installed, and what version. You can use the rpm command in this fashion to determine which of the errata items you will need to upgrade.

At a minimum, you will need to grab:

  • ImageMagick-4.0.5-4
  • control-panel-3.7-4
  • gnome-core-0.13-10
  • gnome-graphics-0.13-10
  • gnome-libs-0.13-10
  • gnome-linuxconf-0.13-17rh
  • imlib-1.6-1
  • libjpeg-6b-5
  • libjpeg6a-6a-2
  • libtiff-3.4-4
  • libungif-3.0-4
  • libungif-progs-3.0-4
  • usermode-1.4.1-4
  • usernet-1.0.7-4

If you plan on doing any development work you will also need:

  • ImageMagick-devel-4.0.5-4
  • imlib-devel-1.6-1
  • libjpeg-devel-6b-5
  • libtiff-devel-3.4-4
  • libungif-devel-3.0-4

Finally, if you use any of these apps, you will need the appropriate errata:

  • gimp
  • xfig
  • xv
  • zgv

NOTE: Be sure to check the other Red Hat errata items to make sure there are not more recent updates for these files.

Step 2 - Installing support RPMS

GNOME requires the following support packages which are included in Red Hat Linux, but which may not be installed by default:
  • umb-scheme

GNOME also requires several support packages which are not part of the Red Hat 5.1 distribution. RPMS of the required packages are located at ftp://ftp.gnome.org/pub/GNOME/redhat/support:

  • gmp
  • gsl
  • guile
If you plan on doing development work for GNOME, you will also want:
  • gmp-devel
  • guile-devel

You need to make sure you have the GIMP toolkit (gtk+) installed as well.

For GNOME v0.20 and before, you need gtk+-1.0 and glib-1.0.

For GNOME v0.25 up, you need gtk+-1.1 and glib-1.1 or newer.


If you intend on installing gtk+-1.1/glib-1.1 you need to be extremely careful how you install this update. Because you most likely have older applications (like the gimp) which need gtk+-1.0, you do not want to use the '-U' option for rpm to upgrade.

Instead, use the following command:

  rpm -ivh gtk+-1.1.x.i386.rpm glib-1.1.x.i386.rpm

Replace the filenames with the actual gtk+/glib package names you are using. By installing gtk+/glib in this fashion, your older gtk+-1.0 applications will continue to operate properly

Finally (yes we're almost done!) you want to grab the actual GNOME distribution. The latest version is always located at ftp://ftp.gnome.org/pub/GNOME/latest. Grab these files and install in the following order:
  • ORBit
  • esound
  • gnome-libs
  • libgtop
  • gnome-guile
  • gnome-objc
  • gnome-core
  • gnome-games
  • gnome-graphics
  • gnome-media
  • gnome-admin
  • gnome-utils
  • gnome-network
  • gmc
  • mc

(NOTE: there may not always be versions of all of these packages, depending upon their development state. Check back later if a package doesn't currently exist. Also, the set of files in the latest/ directory is not at any given time guaranteed to be in a working state. It normally is, however.)

You can grab the packages with "-devel-" in their names too, but ONLY if you are interested in building GNOME apps of your own. If you just want to try running some GNOME apps the devel packages are unnecesary.

Step 3 - Enjoy the world of GNOME

Ok, so you got it all installed, what can you do? The first thing to do is to remember this is a quickly developing project, and there are lots of debugging information still being output. So when you run an app and tons of information spews out, just realize this is normal. The next step is to checkout the tour of GNOME apps to familiarize with the GNOME environment.

Permission to use material from the GNOME website was kindly granted by Michal Fulbright.

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