How can I examine build script?

Larry Dickson ldickson at
Fri Feb 27 21:29:07 UTC 2009

Hi all,

I'm trying to construct a spec file with a few small sources, and I find the
rpmbuild macros and documentation (creating and changing directories,
unpacking files before or after, etc) impossible to follow. An obvious
solution, documented in "Maximum RPM," is to use the rpmbuild --test option
to generate the build scripts, examine them, and tinker the options on
%setup and the like until things fall into their slots.

However, in my version (4.4.2) of rpmbuild, --test gives an "unknown option"
error. There is no mention of this in documentation or FAQ, and I found a
couple other queries on the web which got no answer. Attempt to use
"--nobuild" apparently generates no script. Actually running rpmbuild -bp
(in this case) references a script with output like

Executing(%prep): /bin/sh -e

but it presumably deletes it because I can't find it afterwards. There's
stuff preceded by "+" signs in the output, but this information is
incomplete. There's a script dated Feb 11 that I found in /var/tmp, but I do
not know how it got there, and new ones do not appear.

This is extremely frustrating, because the usual approach of slightly
varying an older spec file does not work for me here. The old one had a
single source, the new one multiple sources. Can anyone show me how to
capture this script?

Larry Dickson
Cutting Edge Networked Storage
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