I read recently that installing dependencies in Linux, let's say through apt for example, is quite different from BSD style ports. (And I guess MacPorts borrows from this style?) But I'm not entirely clear on the differences. Apologies if this question is too open ended, but I thought this might be an okay place to get some explanation.

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    apt uses binary packages called deb files; and was the first widely used dependency manager in linux. BSD ports is an entirely different style of packaging, more akin to gentoo than to deb(s). Dec 21, 2016 at 2:24
  • So debs are pre-compiled binaries, while ports are pure source built on the target machine?
    – jerome
    Dec 21, 2016 at 2:26
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    The original FreeBSD ports was entirely source based (as far as I can recall), but now there are also binary packages (which makes it a little complicated to describe, but ultimately more user friendly). There are also source packages (deb-src) on debian derived systems. Open source software usually includes an easy way to get at the source. Dec 21, 2016 at 2:31
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    @ElliottFrisch Please make into an answer to get points. Dec 21, 2016 at 3:52


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