Short bio: Computer Scientist, FOSS supporter (read more)
Tux Machines (TM)-specific
In this article we are going to compare some of the most common commands used to manage Ubuntu and Gentoo Linux. Ubuntu and Gentoo are two completely different distributions, but some aspects are comparable, like operations with the packet manager they have: Ubuntu has dpkg, Gentoo has Portage, but on both the systems you’ll want to install or remove some software.
Packet Management Systems
You should already know what a package management system is: if you don’t, go read it. Some common task you will do with a packet manager are:
updating the list of available packets
installing a packet
removing a packet
searching for a packet
updating all the system at once
Some of these tasks are comparable 1:1 from Ubuntu to Gentoo, others need some words to be spent on them.
On Ubuntu the packet manager is aptitude and the packets are called debs. Binary packets are ready for use and this is the great reason why installing a Debian based system will require minutes, not hours. You can also use some specific tool, like apt-build for installing packages, it will automatically fetch the source package of the package maintainer and compile it. You can also get the source package, unpack it, patch it, reconfigure it, and remake a new .deb binary file to share to the world.
On Gentoo the packet manager is “emerge” and the packets are called “ebuilds”.