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I'm using ubuntu i686.
Need to install i386 .rpm packages.
tried this code:

alien -i [file.i386.rpm]

Tried to install ia32-libs...

apt-get install ia32-libs 

...and tried alien again but didn't work.

any suggestion? thx.

[suggestion #1: run alien with sudo -c -v ...]
your suggestion didn't work. Same error reported:

file.i386.rpm is for architecture i386 ; the package cannot be built on this system.  

The line above the error is the command chmod:

chmod 755 ["name of directory"/debian/rules]

any other suggestion? thx.

share|improve this question

I had the same problem and solved it this way:

alien --to-tgz --scripts file.i386.rpm
mkdir unpack
cd unpack
tar -xpzf ../file.tgz
mv install ..
cp -rv * /
cd ../install

The RPM is converted to a TGZ file. Be aware that the ".386" is not in the name of the TGZ file.

share|improve this answer

Run alien with sudo and -c -v parameters:

sudo alien -i -c -v file.i386.rpm

The -c (--scripts) parameter Include scripts in package

The -v (--verbose) parameter Display each command alien runs so you can see what is going wrong.

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8086 = 8-bit

80186 = 8-bit

80286 = 16-bit

80386 = 32-bit

80486 = 32-bit

80586 = 32-bit = Pentium, Pentium MMX, K5, K6, K6-II, K6-III

80686 = 32-bit = Pentium Pro, Pentium II, Pentium III, Athlon, Athlon XP, Opteron*, Athlon FX-51*, Athlon FX-53*, Athlon 64*

80786 = 32-bit = Pentium 4

  • = 32-bit/64-bit

If you have compiled a program for 386 architectures, only the processors equal to it or above it can execute it.

So the i386.rpm cannot run to your ubuntu i686

share|improve this answer
ok. but in theory i can with ia32-libs. run x86 bin on x64 architecture. right? – Raffaello Nov 13 '12 at 11:35

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