This post has been updated to reflect my experience with re-installing the version 3.7.3 rpm in late 2009.
XEphem is a full-featured astronomical epehemeris program for Linux and Linux-like systems (e.g. FreeBSD and it’s non-free cousin, Mac OSX).
For an rpm install all you need, besides some other prerequisite packages, is an
.xephemrc file in the running user’s home directory that contains the line:
~/.xephem subdirectory with a file called
XEphem in it. The
XEphem file would have the following parameters defined in it, at a minimum:
XEphem.ShareDir: /usr/lib/xephem XEphem.Elevation: 111.3 m XEphem.Lat: 35:46:38 XEphem.Long: 78:38:21 XEphem.Sitename: Raleigh, North Carolina XEphem.TZName: America/New-York XEphem.TZone EDT
To build from source, follow the instructions in the INSTALL file that comes with the distribution. I haven’t tried building 3.7.4 yet, but if my experience with 3.7.3 is any guide expect it to be an afternoon project.
Below are the contents of my own xephem.desktop file for installation under
/usr/share/applications. Note that the 3.7.3 rpm copies the XEphem.png icon image file to
/usr/share/pixmaps automatically but the supplied menu (.desktop) files don’t appear to work with RHEL/CentOS 5 and later.
[Desktop Entry] Name=XEphem Comment=Astronomical Ephemeris Exec=xephem Icon=XEphem.png Terminal=false Type=Application Version=3.7.3 Actions=Full; Categories=Application;Astronomy;X-Red-Hat-Extra; Encoding=UTF-8