What are the advantages (and disadvantages) of OpenCSW over pkgsrc ?

When looking for available packages for Solaris-like distributions, we often stumble upon both pkgsrc and opencsw and have then to make a choice.

To make an enlightened decision, can you describe the advantages and disadvantages of choosing OpenCSW over pkgsrc ?

asked: 2013-11-03 by: yann

lorenct answers:

Okay, I had this question earlier this evening. I just finished installing a Solaris 11.1 x86_64 system for home-use/testing purposes. I previously played around with OmniOS and OpenIndiana, but found issues with out-of-date drivers and just a lack of the current "Solaris-goodness" that I am used to because lets just face fact, they are all behind considering the source/scraps that Oracle makes available.

Since I have gotten lazy and I really do not build everything from scratch any more, I looked at sources for pre-built software. I was familiar with pkgsrc from using OmniOS and OpenIndiana, so I figured I would install pkgsrc/pkgin on the new system. Well, it failed to install/initialize (pkg_admin rebuild) with an error message about Illumos libc.so.1 not present... There you go, pkgsrc is dependent upon that specific library from the source of pkgin obtained from SmartOS, so running pkgsrc is not an option it you are a pure Oracle Solaris shop.

Now on the other hand, OpenCSW, appears to be able to installed on any flavor of Solaris-ish operating system you want to use that provides pkg utilities (besides SmartOS, but there is a work-around for that). So when using OmniOS, OpenIndiana, or Oracle Solaris, it appears that OpenCSW would provide a common installation source. Uniformity across a network makes an administrators job a whole lot easier...

Hope my ramblings gave you some insight to your question.

yann commented:

Hi Lorenct,

Thanks for your feedback !