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Debian package "hello-world"

In order to package a dummy "hello-world", it's assumed that you have the required software to do it installed and that you follow all the needed steps. It's also assumed that you are running an operating system that allows .deb package installation.

For the impatient, download file hello.tar.gz (contains the necessary files to the "hello-world" package) and go straight ahead to build process section.

Contents of hello.tar.gz: 

  • changelog - Contains information about version number, revision, distribution, and urgency. (More info).
  • compat - Specifies the compatibility mode. Nowadays, it goes from 1 (default) to 9, each one specifying particular behaviour of some of the tasks execute in particular targets of the build process. (More info).
  • control - Contains important information of the package, namely the package name, maintainer, dependencies (build dependencies, execution dependencies) and others, that are useful for package related programs: dpkg, apt-get, etc. (More info).
  • copyrights - Contains information about copyrights and licences associated both to the "program" files and package related files (More info).
  • dirs - Contains information about directories that must exist or be created upon package installation (More info).

    PS: This file isn't really needed as /usr/bin is created by default on system installation.

  • hello-world.manpages - Specifies the name of the man pages files that are going to be installed (More info).
  • hello-word.pod - Man page described using POD (Perl Old Documentation) format, that is going to be transformed in nroff format in the Debian package creation process.
  • install - File describing the install directory for the hello-world script (More info).
  • README - Contains information about the program.
  • rules - Debian specific makefile for package generation (More info).
  • format - Debian file stating the format of the package. It must be either "3.0 (native)" for Debian native packages or "3.0 (quilt)" for everything else (More info).
  • hello-word - Hello world shell script.

Descriptive steps to build, install and run the content of the package:

  1. Extract the archive content
  2. Build
  3. Verify package with lintian
  4. Install
  5. Run it 
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  1. Jul 09, 2014


    Simple, short and straight, the best one I found so far,

    Thanks a lot!

  2. Nov 30, 2014


    Thank You again.

    JJ found this again. this is all needed - the changelog can be maintained by hand and bob is your uncle

  3. Dec 11, 2016


    Thanks! I've been reading guides for a few days. This is the only one that gives you a quick starting point. All the others introduce too many concepts too early (possibly because they are for debian maintainers?)