Slackware for x86_64 - multilib packages & build instructions

Slackware for the x86_64 architecture (or Slackware64 for short) is a pure
64-bit Operating System, but by design it is "multilib-ready".  This means,
that is it is possible to add a layer of software that will allow you to run
32bit software without changes to either Slackware64 or these 32bit packages.
Furthermore, the multilib-enabled Slackware64 can compile 32bit binaries,
if you add the right software to it.

This README contains instructions on how to use the packages in this
directory to create a multilib Slackware64.

A more extensive documentation is available on the Slackware Documentation
Wiki, where you will also find
the main mirror locations for downloading these packages.

The exciting thing about Slackware64, is that you do not have to compile
all these basic 32-bit packages from scratch.  You simply take them from the
32-bit Slackware package tree!  Further down, I will explain how you can take
a 32-bit Slackware package (say, the "mesa" package) and strip/re-package its
content into a "mesa-compat32" package that you can install onto your 64-bit
Slackware computer straight away.

Enabling multilib

Fast-track (examples assume slackware64-15.0 ... change to your needs).
All of the following commands should be executed as the 'root' user:

* In the location where you found this README, download the subdirectory with
  the name that corresponds to the Slackware version you are running.  For
  Slackware64 15.0 for instance, you would run the following command:
    # lftp -c 'open ; mirror -c -e 15.0'
  and then change into the new "15.0" directory which has been created on
  your computer:
    # cd 15.0
* First, you will upgrade your 64bit Slackware gcc and glibc packages to their
  multilib versions by running the command:
    # upgradepkg --reinstall --install-new *.t?z
  in the directory you just changed to (the "15.0" directory in our case).
  This will upgrade gcc and glibc packages, and also install a new package
  called "compat32-tools".
* You are now going to install 32-bit compatibility packages to support all
  the 32-bit programs you may want to run (roughly 60 MB of packages, not all
  that much really!).  These packages are located in the subdirectory called
  "slackware64-compat32" which you also downloaded with the "lftp" command
  shown above.  Run this command:
    # upgradepkg --install-new slackware64-compat32/*-compat32/*.t?z
* This procedure will also work if you already had a multilib setup and have
  upgraded your Slackware to a newer release (new compat32 packages will be
  installed and existing ones will be upgraded).
* Done!  You need to reboot because of the glibc upgrade.

In more detail:

The following packages are replacements for - not additions to - standard
Slackware packages.  You use the "upgradepkg" program to upgrade to my
multilib versions of gcc and glibc.  You will need these in order to run,
and build, 32-bit software on your 64-bit Slackware computer:

==Slackware64 13.0==

* The gcc compiler suite:
  - gcc-4.3.3_multilib-x86_64-4alien.txz
  - gcc-g++-4.3.3_multilib-x86_64-4alien.txz
  - gcc-gfortran-4.3.3_multilib-x86_64-4alien.txz
  - gcc-gnat-4.3.3_multilib-x86_64-4alien.txz
  - gcc-java-4.3.3_multilib-x86_64-4alien.txz
  - gcc-objc-4.3.3_multilib-x86_64-4alien.txz

* The GNU libc libraries:
  - glibc-2.9_multilib-x86_64-5alien_slack13.0.txz
  - glibc-i18n-2.9_multilib-x86_64-5alien_slack13.0.txz
  - glibc-profile-2.9_multilib-x86_64-5alien_slack13.0.txz
  - glibc-solibs-2.9_multilib-x86_64-5alien_slack13.0.txz
  - glibc-zoneinfo-2.9_multilib-noarch-5alien_slack13.0.txz

==Slackware64 13.1==

* The gcc compiler suite:
  - gcc-4.4.4_multilib-x86_64-1alien.txz
  - gcc-g++-4.4.4_multilib-x86_64-1alien.txz
  - gcc-gfortran-4.4.4_multilib-x86_64-1alien.txz
  - gcc-gnat-4.4.4_multilib-x86_64-1alien.txz
  - gcc-java-4.4.4_multilib-x86_64-1alien.txz
  - gcc-objc-4.4.4_multilib-x86_64-1alien.txz

* The GNU libc libraries:
  - glibc-2.11.1_multilib-x86_64-5alien_slack13.1.txz
  - glibc-i18n-2.11.1_multilib-x86_64-5alien_slack13.1.txz
  - glibc-profile-2.11.1_multilib-x86_64-5alien_slack13.1.txz
  - glibc-solibs-2.11.1_multilib-x86_64-5alien_slack13.1.txz
  - glibc-zoneinfo-2.11.1_multilib-noarch-5alien_slack13.1.txz

==Slackware64 13.37==

* The gcc compiler suite:
  - gcc-4.5.2_multilib-x86_64-2alien.txz
  - gcc-g++-4.5.2_multilib-x86_64-2alien.txz
  - gcc-gfortran-4.5.2_multilib-x86_64-2alien.txz
  - gcc-gnat-4.5.2_multilib-x86_64-2alien.txz
  - gcc-java-4.5.2_multilib-x86_64-2alien.txz
  - gcc-objc-4.5.2_multilib-x86_64-2alien.txz

* The GNU libc libraries:
  - glibc-2.13_multilib-x86_64-7alien.txz
  - glibc-i18n-2.13_multilib-x86_64-7alien.txz
  - glibc-profile-2.13_multilib-x86_64-7alien.txz
  - glibc-solibs-2.13_multilib-x86_64-7alien.txz
  - glibc-zoneinfo-2013d_multilib-noarch-7alien.txz

==Slackware64 14.0==

* The gcc compiler suite:
  - gcc-g++-4.7.1_multilib-x86_64-1alien.txz
  - gcc-gfortran-4.7.1_multilib-x86_64-1alien.txz
  - gcc-gnat-4.7.1_multilib-x86_64-1alien.txz
  - gcc-go-4.7.1_multilib-x86_64-1alien.txz
  - gcc-java-4.7.1_multilib-x86_64-1alien.txz
  - gcc-objc-4.7.1_multilib-x86_64-1alien.txz

* The GNU libc libraries:
  - glibc-2.15_multilib-x86_64-8alien.txz
  - glibc-i18n-2.15_multilib-x86_64-8alien.txz
  - glibc-profile-2.15_multilib-x86_64-8alien.txz
  - glibc-solibs-2.15_multilib-x86_64-8alien.txz
  - glibc-zoneinfo-2013d_2013d_multilib-noarch-8alien.txz

==Slackware64 14.1==

* The gcc compiler suite:
  - gcc-4.8.2_multilib-x86_64-1alien.txz
  - gcc-g++-4.8.2_multilib-x86_64-1alien.txz
  - gcc-gfortran-4.8.2_multilib-x86_64-1alien.txz
  - gcc-gnat-4.8.2_multilib-x86_64-1alien.txz
  - gcc-go-4.8.2_multilib-x86_64-1alien.txz
  - gcc-java-4.8.2_multilib-x86_64-1alien.txz
  - gcc-objc-4.8.2_multilib-x86_64-1alien.txz

* The GNU libc libraries:
  - glibc-2.17_multilib-x86_64-7alien.txz
  - glibc-i18n-2.17_multilib-x86_64-7alien.txz
  - glibc-profile-2.17_multilib-x86_64-7alien.txz
  - glibc-solibs-2.17_multilib-x86_64-7alien.txz
  - glibc-zoneinfo-2013d_multilib-noarch-7alien.txz

==Slackware64 14.2==

* The gcc compiler suite:
  - gcc-5.5.0_multilib-x86_64-1alien.txz
  - gcc-g++-5.5.0_multilib-x86_64-1alien.txz
  - gcc-gfortran-5.5.0_multilib-x86_64-1alien.txz
  - gcc-gnat-5.5.0_multilib-x86_64-1alien.txz
  - gcc-go-5.5.0_multilib-x86_64-1alien.txz
  - gcc-java-5.5.0_multilib-x86_64-1alien.txz
  - gcc-objc-5.5.0_multilib-x86_64-1alien.txz

* The GNU libc libraries:
  - glibc-2.23_multilib-x86_64-4alien.txz
  - glibc-i18n-2.23_multilib-x86_64-4alien.txz
  - glibc-profile-2.23_multilib-x86_64-4alien.txz
  - glibc-solibs-2.23_multilib-x86_64-4alien.txz

==Slackware64 15.0 ==

* The gcc compiler suite:
  - gcc-11.2.0_multilib-x86_64-2alien.txz
  - gcc-brig-11.2.0_multilib-x86_64-2alien.txz
  - gcc-g++-11.2.0_multilib-x86_64-2alien.txz
  - gcc-gdc-11.2.0_multilib-x86_64-2alien.txz
  - gcc-gfortran-11.2.0_multilib-x86_64-2alien.txz
  - gcc-gnat-11.2.0_multilib-x86_64-2alien.txz
  - gcc-go-11.2.0_multilib-x86_64-2alien.txz
  - gcc-objc-11.2.0_multilib-x86_64-2alien.txz

* The GNU libc libraries:
  - aaa_glibc-solibs-2.33_multilib-x86_64-5alien.txz
  - glibc-2.33_multilib-x86_64-5alien.txz
  - glibc-i18n-2.33_multilib-x86_64-5alien.txz
  - glibc-profile-2.33_multilib-x86_64-5alien.txz

==Slackware64 current==

* The gcc compiler suite:
  - gcc-11.2.0_multilib-x86_64-2alien.txz
  - gcc-brig-11.2.0_multilib-x86_64-2alien.txz
  - gcc-g++-11.2.0_multilib-x86_64-2alien.txz
  - gcc-gdc-11.2.0_multilib-x86_64-2alien.txz
  - gcc-gfortran-11.2.0_multilib-x86_64-2alien.txz
  - gcc-gnat-11.2.0_multilib-x86_64-2alien.txz
  - gcc-go-11.2.0_multilib-x86_64-2alien.txz
  - gcc-objc-11.2.0_multilib-x86_64-2alien.txz

* The GNU libc libraries:
  - aaa_glibc-solibs-2.33_multilib-x86_64-5alien.txz
  - glibc-2.33_multilib-x86_64-5alien.txz
  - glibc-i18n-2.33_multilib-x86_64-5alien.txz
  - glibc-profile-2.33_multilib-x86_64-5alien.txz


There is one more package (compat32-tools); you install it using the
"installpkg" program:

* The compat32-tools package is a "32-bit toolkit" (containing scripts that
  facilitate the creation of 32bit packages):
  - compat32-tools-3.9-noarch-28alien.tgz 

* The above packages cover the essentials for getting ready to run and compile
  32-bit software on Slackware64.  But in order to be able to actually run
  software, you need a "layer" of additional 32-bit support libraries as well.
  These libraries are taken from standard Slackware 32-bit packages using the
  scripts that are part of my "compat32-tools" package.
* You use the "" script for this conversion;
  Suppose you have downloaded a local copy of 32-bit Slackware, and it is
  available in the directory: /home/ftp/pub/slackware/slackware-15.0
  then you would run the command:
    # -i /home/ftp/pub/slackware/slackware-15.0/slackware
  and the result is a number of subdirectories in your current directory,
  containing "compat32" packages which you can install directly (they will not
  conflict with your 64-bit packages).
* You can also instruct the "" script to download everything
  you need from an external Slackware mirror, if you do not have (or do not
  want to download) a complete local copy of Slackware:
    # -u"
* Or if you are lazy you can just download the "slackware64-compat32" directory
  in which I provide all these converted packages for you.  It is a subdirectory
  of the directory that contains the multilib gcc and glibc packages.

Adding 32-bit programs

The scripts in the "compat32-tools" package need some explanation.
The package installs a detailed 'README' in the /usr/doc/compat32-tools-*/
directory that will help you on your way.  Basically, you get three scripts
to run:
  - /etc/profile.d/
    This is the same script that also comes with Slamd64 and which configures
    an environment that you need for compiling 32-bit software (by preferring
    the 32-bit compilers and libraries over their 64-bit versions)
  - /usr/sbin/convertpkg-compat32
    This script takes a 32-bit Slackware package and converts it to a
    '-compat32' package that you can install (using "installpkg") on
    Slackware64, alongside a 64-bit version of the same software.
  - /usr/sbin/
    This script contains an internal list of essential 32-bit Slackware
    packages.  It uses the previously mentioned "convertpkg-compat32" script
    to grab every package on its internal package list, and converts them
    into '-compat32' packages.  You will end up with about 60 MB of packages
    that you must install next, using the command "upgradepkg --install-new".
    These 'compat32' packages create a 32-bit compatibility layer on top of
    The "" script can either download these 32-bit packages
    from an external Slackware mirror, or else it can use a local Slackware
    mirror if you have one in your LAN.
    Optionally you can specify an output directory for the newly created
    packages; by default they will be created in your current directory.  

Running 32-bit programs

Running a 32-bit program is easy after the above system preparation - just
download, install and start it.  You may find that you still miss a 32-bit
Slackware library; in that case, use the "convertpkg-compat32" script to
convert the original 32-bit Slackware package and install the resulting
32bit compatibility package on Slackware64.

Compiling 32-bit programs

In case you need to compile a 32-bit program (wine and grub are two examples
of open source programs that are 32-bit only) you first configure your
shell environment by running the command:

  . /etc/profile.d/

Note the 'dot' in front of the filename - that is actually part of the
commandline!  It will change or create several environment variables so
that 32-bit versions of binaries are preferred.  Once you are done compiling
32-bit software, you should logout of your root shell in order to get rid of
the modified build environment.

In this changed environment, you will be able to use standard SlackBuilds to
build 32-bit packages for Slackware64.
There's a couple of things to keep in mind:

(1) You have to define the ARCH variable as 'i586' because even on your
    'x86_64' computer you are compiling a 32-bit program! 
    This is related to the triplet of '$ARCH-slackware-linux' which 
    is normally used in the 'configure' command.
    (a) As an exception, you will have to compile the 'wine' package with
        'ARCH=x86_64' because you will install this package directly on
        your multilib computer without converting to a 'compat32' package.

(2) If you want to install this 32-bit package on Slackware64-multilib,
    you will have to convert it to a 'compat32' package: 

      # convertpkg-compat32 -i /path/to/your/fresh/foo-VERSION-i586-BUILD.tgz
      # upgradepkg --install-new /tmp/foo-compat32-VERSION-x86_64-BUILDcompat32.txz

Keeping your multilib up-to-date

If you use slackpkg to keep your Slackware uptodate, then you may benefit from
adding slackpkg+ (, an extension to
slackpkg which allows you to manage package updates, not just for Slackware,
but also for 3rd party repositories which adhere to the Slackware repository
The Multilib repository is compatible with slackpkg+, and its configuration
file has instructions on how to enable multilib repository support.  
If you do not use slackpkg, then your best option is to keep a local mirror
of the multilib repository for your Slackware version, and regularly run:
  # cd /path/to/multilib/slackware_version_dir/
  # upgradepkg --install-new *.t?z
  # upgradepkg --install-new slackware64-compat32/*-compat32/*.t?z
If you do use slackpkg but do not want to add slackpkg+ then you need to do
the above but also take precautions so that slackpkg does not remove or
replace the multilib packages. Add these lines to /etc/slackpkg/blacklist to
prevent this behaviour:


A lot of thanks should go to Fred Emmott, who created Slamd64, the original
unofficial 64-bit fork of Slackware.  Although Slackware64 was not based
on Fred's work, I still learnt most of what I know about setting up the
32-bit part of a multilib Linux from his writings that are found in Slamd64.

Cross Linux From Scratch. The CLFS Wiki
is a 'must-read' if you want to understand how to port Linux to a new
architecture. I took several ideas, concepts and patches from them when
creating Slackware64 from scratch, and again when I created my multilib
gcc/glibc packages from scratch (my README on this multilib-from-scratch
is available in the ./source directory).

Have fun!


Eric Hameleers <> 02-feb-2022
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