if you're refusing to rebuild erlang packages (which is, I admit, pretty difficult) why not to use kerl?
Thanks for the note. I was unfamiliar with "kerl". It looks very cool.
I did run into one problem using it. It failed to build R14B04 on a fresh Ubuntu 11.10 box. The build log shows:
configure: error: No curses library functions found
configure: error: /bin/bash '/home/bryanhunter/.kerl/builds/r14b04/otp_src_R14B04/erts/configure' failed for erts
I did a "sudo apt-get update" and tried to build with kerl again and it failed in the same way. I then did a "sudo apt-get -y install libncurses5-dev". I tried again after that, and everything builds successfully.