Originally Posted by Ghjnut
So is there any situation you would suggest using source code aside from development purposes and lack of rpm support?
Sure. To build rpm's. Even if an rpm doesn't exist, or a binary package doesn't exist, building a binary package from source would be best.
Other than the two reasons you posed, there really isn't a benefit. Or the benefit is so small, it becomes inconsequential. OK, having a customized install, and performance gain of maybe 10% compared to all the work you put in. Even in Gentoo, where you customize it all yourself, is pushing it. A lot of work, hours of compiling (KDE can take days depending on your cpu), for what? A few percentage points in performance?
OK, I'm gonna go on a rant here, cause I feel it's appropriate.
I have seen many debates between deb and rpm and source. First, I find it amusing that when they talk about deb, they immediately go to apt, synaptic, that sort of thing. When talking rpm, they talk about yum, yast, urpmi, that sort of thing. In 99% of these debates, neither side understands their own package management (deb/rpm). Occasionaly, you'll get the source proponents, who don't get that slackware and Gentoo are both binary distros. They try and tout the advantages of source, with out counting the cost. Since I have been studying package management for about 4 years now, and used most package managers, it helps in my study/research, I'll tell you, the best thing you can do is get to know your base package manager. If in an rpm distro, get to know rpm. If in a deb distro, get to know dpkg and dselect. If in slackware, get to know pkgtools, and Gentoo, get to know portage.
When you hear someone complaining about rpm, and how apt rules, then you know that that person doesn't have a clue. Or when someone says deb sucks and yum, or smart, or yast rules, you know they don't have a clue. What either side is talking about is the interface to the base level package manager. Something like this. You call on yum, you do your stuff in yum and then yum calls on rpm. You see, yum is the second layer. Now if you throw in packagekit, now you're talking yet another layer. So really, what most are debating is the second layer in package management.
If you have anymore questions, by all means, don't hesitate to ask.