How do you Tame User Space Dependencies when applying a patch on Linux?

It is a common plague that haunts most Linux users. You just applied a patch to a user-space app and the next thing you have to battle with are: version conflicts, missing libraries and at other times, broken builds. These are all dependency problems which most of us dread.

So how do you tackle the challenge? Do you manually track dependencies or you prefer to use the package manager that came with your Distro? Some people claim that they use Virtualization techniques like Containerization. Does it work for you? Or do you have alternative approaches to pull through the daunting challenge of user-space patching in Linux?

Please share and let’s learn.

I always prefer to use Containerization (Docker) if it is possible. This way,

  • I can keep the applications and the host system independent from each other.
  • Since unnecessary applications and dependencies are not added to the host system and remain minimal, it is easy to manage and conflicts are almost non-existent.
  • On the apps side, because it’s built on a specific version, it works flawlessly everywhere. When you need to upgrade, you can test the new version locally. And it’s easier to back up or move the project.