[Rubygems-developers] Can anyone shed a little light on executable gems for me?

Stephen Bannasch stephen.bannasch at deanbrook.org
Sat Dec 29 13:05:24 EST 2007

At 11:16 AM -0600 12/29/07, michael greenly wrote:
>I don't really have a problem installing it in different directories 
>and in fact that's exactly what I have at the moment (it's the only 
>I describe my current setup in this blog post: 
>The one minor shortcoming of this arrangement is that the user has 
>to know where things are installed and use the full paths when they 
>want to execute a specific gem.  So for example you'd have to type 
>/opt/ruby/1.9/bin/rails to run that specific version.  It works but 
>it's not a clean solution.

I'm not sure how to make clean and simple.

One difference between my setup and yours is that I have just one 
ruby in /usr/local (1.8.6p111) and mine is actually installed there. 
My other two major ruby environments (jruby and 1.9) always live in 
separate directories with no links from /usr/local.

An element that both simplifies and complicates is that I modify PATH 
to put a path to <other_ruby>/bin first when I want to work in JRuby 
or 1.9. That allows me to use gem, rake, rails or any other command 
that might get installed in bin and it always works. It also means 
I've got to keep track of the shells I've modified path in. I almost 
never use full paths to execute anything.

>I was mostly only asking trying to get a bit of historical 
>perspective on recent changes? If there was one?  I intend on 
>spending some time learning just what makes gems tick and then 
>taking a real hard look at how it's being re-packaged on Debian 
>based systems.

If you haven't seen it check out this thread on ruby-core to get an 
idea of some of the issues mixing package-based ruby with 
locally-installed additions:

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