Arch Made Easy | LAS | s19e03

Arch Made Easy | LAS | s19e03

Is the Chakra Project a beautifully simple ready to go Arch Linux desktop, or off the tracks onto an island of it’s own? We find out, plus what sets pacman apart from FreeBSD’s Ports system!

Also – Chris blasts Google for leaving Nexus One owns behind, Jolicloud ditches the Netbook, and we celebrate a new geek holiday!


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  • By: Nov 15, 2011

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Chakra Project Review, IE Arch Made Easy:

Pacman vs Ports

  • Pacman is the binary package tool for Arch Linux. The FreeBSD equivalent is pkg_add
  • the Arch Build System (ABS) is designed to mimic some of the capabilities of FreeBSD’s ports system
  • Both Ports and ABS consist of a number of directories named after various packages sorted into categories (ie ABS: extra/daemons/apache Ports: www/apache22). These directories do not contain the files or source code for firefox, but rather just a few script files that provide the infrastructure to allow you to build firefox.
  • Both Ports and ABS automate the process of building software, including the following steps:
  • Download source code from mirrors
  • Checksum the file (for security and integrity)
  • Extract the files
  • Apply any required patches (FreeBSD changes the default paths for a lot of apps to follow the FreeBSD directory structure)
  • Run the configure script (FreeBSD provides a text based menu for selecting options)
  • Compile the application
  • BSD ONLY: Install the application
  • BSD ONLY: checksum all the files that were installed
  • BSD ONLY: Uninstall the application (remove any unmodified files using checksums from earlier)
  • Create a package that can be installed (with pacman or pkg_add respectively)
  • ABS is only a build system used to build packages, that are then installed and managed by pacman
  • Ports is integrated with pkg_add and the package registry, and allows you to install the build application without the additional step of building a package.

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