I see what your saying and i suppose I have two points:
1) Can you install a port without installing the ports tree?
Ports can not be installed without first being built, and the ports tree is what enables you to build a port. Short answer: no.
Somewhat longer answer: If your concern is disk space, in theory it would be possible, I think, to install only that subset of the ports tree required to build the port you are interested in, but that task is non-trivial. Most ports depend on other ports, which themselves depend on other ports, and so on. One of the advantages of the ports tree is that having it available means you do not have to resolve those dependencies manually. I don't think if you install an individual port it would be smart enough to resolve these dependencies automatically (but I've never tried to do it that way). If not, you would have to untar the part of the ports tree containing the port you wish to build, then attempt to install it. Then handle each of the inevitable errors in turn, untarring progressively more of the ports tree until you get it to the point where it will install your port. I don't think this is the best way to go, but I would be interested to know if and how well it works.
If you go to http://www.freebsd.org/ports/ you can browse the ports collection online and download individual tarballs for each port. Each port also lists its dependencies so you can see how big of a task you might be letting yourself in for.
Alternative answer: The ports tree, while generally very efficient, is just one way of installing software on your FreeBSD system. If source is available for the software you want to install, you can try downloading it directly from the developer and building it yourself. If they haven't built with FreeBSD in mind, you may have to patch the source to get it to build and you'll still have to resolve dependencies manually. That's why most people prefer ports :)
2) If you must install the ports tree, what is the best way to keep it up to date?
I use CVSup and I think most others do, too:
I am still new at this, and can't seem to find packages for all the ports in the tree...
My understanding is this: That there aren't packages for all the ports in the tree, but that there are many more packages available on the ftp site(s) than ship on the CD. If you browse the ports collection online you'll be able to download packages for many (most?) of the ports. If you would really rather not install the ports tree, I'd invest some time in looking for the package you want to install. Odds are pretty good it's available.
-- Danny _______________________________________________ [EMAIL PROTECTED] mailing list http://lists.freebsd.org/mailman/listinfo/freebsd-questions To unsubscribe, send any mail to "[EMAIL PROTECTED]"