First ever rpm, how are files extracted from the rpm and where do they go?

Ignacio Valdes ivaldes at
Wed Feb 11 05:01:14 UTC 2009

Hi all,

I have a package that I've built the rpm for that doesn't install.
Let's call it myfirst.rpm. It consists of 3 tar.gz files, 2 doc files,
and some shell scripts. The files are listed in %files and the package
builds into a rpm that is consistent with the files being in the rpm.
The desired behavior for the rpm is that rpm -i myfirst rpm results in
the 3 tar.gz files, 2 doc files and some shell scripts are unpacked
from the rpm and then the %post script goes to work on them to process
and move them to their ultimate locations in /opt.

I have the script that does the installation in %post but it is
unclear to me how to unpack the files in the rpm package so tha tthe
%post script can work on them. How does one do this and where do they
go when they are unpacked. For instance, if I have myfirst.rpm in
/root, and I do a rpm -i myfirst.rpm how does one direct the files in
%files to come out of the rpm and on that first unpack from the rpm,
where does rpm put them?

I've read multiple fine manuals but it is unclear how to get rpm to
extract the files and the location that the %post operates on those
extracted files.

-- IV

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