In Linux the two important variants of Operating Systems are Debian And Red hat. For off line installation of softwares Debian variant uses files of type .deb and Red hat uses .rpm files. Most of us uses Debian variant OS and our famous Ubuntu is a Debian variant OS.
>>What you will do to install an rpm file in a Debian variant system , if you can't find out the Debian version of that item ?
There is a way to install an .rpm file in Debian variant systems. You can use alien package converter to do so. Alien is a program that converts between the rpm, dpkg, stampede slp, and slackware tgz file formats. If you want to use a package from another distribution than the one you have installed on your system, you can use alien to convert it to your preferred package format and install it.Note:Alien should not be used to replace important system packages, like sysvinit, shared libraries, or other things that are essential for the functioning of your system. Many of these packages are set up differently by Debian and Red Hat, and packages from the different distributions cannot be used interchangeably. In general, if you can’t un-install the package without breaking your system, don’t try to replace it with an alien version.
Install alien converter :
The software is available at Ubuntu Universe repository.So add that repository in software sources (Option is available there) ,open up the terminal and type
the following commands :
$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get install alien
Installing the .rpm fileFirst convert the .rpm file to .deb by the following command(assumed that your files are in the home directory ) :
$sudo alien -k name-of-rpm-file.rpm
this will produce a .deb file with the same name.now use dpkg to install the .deb file .
$sudo dpkg -i name-of-deb-file.deb