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I've been assigned an Ubuntu machine, after being a long-time Fedora user, and I'm somewhat lost in how to find "non-stable" packages. Specifically, I need make 4.2, but Ubuntu apparently only has 4.1.

My understanding is that I probably need a PPA? How do I find those generally? On yum/rpm-based systems I would probably start with rpmfind.net, but with Ubuntu I don't really know what to look for.

So, in short:

  1. Generally: How do I find PPAs? Is there an "index"?

  2. Specifically: Is there a PPA with Make 4.2?

  • you can search the official package repositories for make, and with a bit of fiddling you could use the version of make provided for 18.10 and install this one on 18.04. An other option is to compile make yourself from upstream master. – Videonauth Sep 29 '18 at 11:54
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make 4.2.1-1.2 utility for directing compilation .deb files for Ubuntu 18.10 can be downloaded from the official Ubuntu website. make 4.2.1-1.2 requires libc6 >=2.27 which is installed by default in Ubuntu 18.04 and later. The information given in your question shows that you are using either Ubuntu 18.04 or Ubuntu 16.04. If you need more up-to-date packages and are running Ubuntu 16.04, you should consider upgrading Ubuntu 16.04 to the latest LTS release, Ubuntu 18.04.

I had no luck searching for make 4.2 at the Personal Package Archives for Ubuntu website as instructed to by How to search for an official PPA?.

To install make_4.2.1-1.2_amd64.deb or make_4.2.1-1.2_i386.deb double-click it to open it for installation in Ubuntu Software.

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  • Downloaded the .deb from your amd64 link and apt install:ed it, worked nicely! Thanks – carlpett Sep 29 '18 at 19:24
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Another option beside the one mentioned by @karel is to compile from source. For that you need to get the sourcefiles and of course too stuff for compiling it.

wget http://ftp.gnu.org/gnu/make/make-4.2.tar.gz
sudo apt install build-essential

Now unpack the source tarball:

tar -xf make-4.2.tar.gz

Then you need to do a patch for making it work on Ubuntu:

wget https://raw.githubusercontent.com/osresearch/heads/make-4.2.1/patches/make-4.2.1.patch
patch < make-4.2.1.patch

When asked give the patch the right file path make-4.2/glob/glob.c. Afterwards you can create the build directory and traverse into it:

mkdir make-4.2/build
cd make-4.2/build

Now configure and make the compilation:

../configure prefix=/usr
make -j4

At this point you can install it by

make install
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