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ZDNet: An Unpleasant Trip to the Linux Library

“Despite its increasing ease of use and installation, there’s a
short-term compatibility problem between some versions of Linux and
some of the binary software available for it. If you don’t match up
your Linux and your software properly, you could be in for some
headaches.”

“Here’s why: A single special file on all Linux systems, almost
as critical to normal operations as the kernel, called ‘libc’
(pronounced lib-SEE). Usually resting in the /lib directory, it’s a
shared library file containing basic functions that are used by
most of Linux’s binary programs. Libc is akin to a Windows DLL but
even more important; without it most binary programs on a Linux
system couldn’t run.”

“When obtaining binary versions of Linux applications, make sure
that the library it was developed for matches that of your Linux
version. Most programs that use glibc say so explicitly.”


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