I mentioned a week or two ago that I upgraded my Thinkpad from Crux 2.5 to 2.6 the hard way, manually recompiling all the new software versions, much like a regular update. I never mentioned however, that four or five of the applications kept failing to build.
The fun part was trying to find out why. I stomped through the logs and discovered that all the failed packages had source files compressed with .tar.xz extensions. Well, that was a new one on me, but I’m also noteworthy for overlooking important changes like that, sometimes for days or weeks at a time. Fair enough — if the source files need xz archive support, I shall install this mysterious new xz, and go right back to cooking up new software.
And that’s when I discovered this.
# Description: Compression utility using the lzma algorithm, successor of lzma-utils ... name=xz version=4.999.9beta source=(http://tukaani.org/xz/$name-$version.tar.xz) ...
Oh, the hilarity that ensued: an application that requires itself to decompress its own source code. It’s like a little joke of sorts.
Or maybe the joke was on me, since I knew of no other way of decompressing a .tar.xz file, and had to sit there and scratch my head for a little while, feeling rather dim-witted. I took the obvious and easy way out, by inserting the Crux 2.6 CD and installing xz as a package, rather than recompiling it.
And of course, from there, upgrading went fine. Still, I found it somewhat amusing that without having the program installed, I couldn’t decompress the source files to install the program. Catch-22-ish, if I may say so.