Linux Magazine: Creating Custom RPMs, Part One

“RPMs can be a great way to manage the packages you install on
your system. Unfortunately, not everything you might want to
install is available in RPM form. Perhaps you need a more recent
version of a program than the one that ships with your
distribution; or maybe it’s a program you wrote yourself; or
perhaps it’s just something that’s very obscure. Similar dilemmas
can occur with non-program packages, such as font or clip art

“Whatever the case, if you’re installing a program for a single
computer, chances are you’ll just install it the old-fashioned way,
by typing make && make install (or some
similar set of commands) in the source directory. make gets the job
done, but it means you’re giving up the benefits of the RPM system.
What’s more, if you’re maintaining several computers, running
around installing the same package on all of them can be