Arch Linux Newsletter

July 25, 2004
Jason Chu
Ben Mazer


Welcome to the Arch Linux Newsletter. This document attempts to give you an "at a glance" look at the world of Arch Linux.

Table Of Contents

  1. Front Page News
  2. Dev Land
  3. ArchStats
  4. Forum Highlights
  5. Mailing List Highlights
  6. Tur Update
  7. Package Highlights
  8. New Packages
  9. FAQ
  10. Bugs
    1. Closed Bugs
    2. Opened Bugs
  11. Closing

Front Page News

No front page news this week...

This Week in Devland

  1. Just in case you haven't heard, the vnc package no longer contains Xvnc. It takes a lot more work to build it (you need the whole xfree86 tree), but Damir is looking at including the precompiled one until a better solution presents itself.
  2. I have finished a package searching web page, to search all packages for a specific file. The problem is that it's hosted on my local server and I don't have a lot of bandwidth. Until I find a better place for it, if you ask nicely, I might tell you where it is.
  3. Steps are being taken to rename all module packages to a common naming scheme. We're still trying to figure out what scheme we'll be using exactly.

Archstats Update

To Participate, visit:

Number of registered systems: 520
Date first system was registered: 20031017
Most recent update occurred: 20040726
Longest recorded uptime: 179 days, 9 hours, 22 minutes, 38 seconds.
Average uptime: 5 days, 10 hours, 47 minutes, 29 seconds.
Least packages installed on a system: 44
Average installed packages: 266
Most packages installed on a system: 733

Forum Highlights

  1. Tehdely released a patch for Pacman that provides separated mirror lists from pacman.conf, for easy updating. It is still being decided whether to include this modification in the official pacman build.
  2. Discussion about Udev continues on the forum. Lots of interesting tips and tricks have appeared.

Mailing List Highlights

  1. Tobias reworked the UDEV How-To at the Wiki. Along with new information, it features cleaned up formatting.

TUR Update

  1. HWD has finally made it into the official repositories. Many people have used STAGING only for this package, so it's a welcome move. HWD provides easy hardware detection in conjunction with Hotplug.

Package Highlights

  1. RealVNC 4.0 was packaged this week. 4.0 is a major update, featuring bug fixes, performance updates, and new features. Read all about VNC4 at the RealVNC website.

New Packages


Q: Should I switch from DevFS to udev?

A: The answer is "maybe". Udev is a more powerful system, and will eventually be replacing DevFS in the official distribution. Right now it's being tested, but is very stable (though not as "officially" stable as DevFS). Luckily switching back and forth between DevFS and Udev is very easy. Throughout the newsletter we have linked to a forum thread and a Wiki page that will help you through the process.

I've switched to Udev recently, and had no trouble transitioning. I especially enjoy the ability to give permanent names to devices. For a Udev-vs-DevFS writeup by the Udev author, see this page.


Bugs Closed

933 egenix-mx-base segfaults
1178 / entry in /etc/mtab
1009 qmail-installer give 404error
1037 gtk-smooth-engine: needs libgdk_pixbuf
953 k3b doesnt work with
1166 patch for mysql plugin in qt
1177 xorg depends on libpng
1176 lame has wrong URL
1174 udev please change the ttyS line
1172 glsof 0.9.16-1 missing dependencies
1170 mplayer font symlink fix
1171 root file system does not show up in mtab
1033 xscreensaver references /usr/games/fortune
1148 pacman segfaults with existing file
1164 /proc entry in /etc/mtab
1093 Povray out of date
1165 rp-pppoe needs a different download source
1161 cups-1.1.20-2 sets wrong permissions on /etc
1159 imlib has a dependency on libjpeg
1073 Can't Add Search Engines to Mozilla-Firefox
1157 Error installing xscreensaver-4.16-3
1155 Gaim with aspell
887 id3lib have problems
1154 Grep should go in /bin, or not be used in rc.sysinit
1152 pacman gives error

Bugs Opened

1188 icewm doesn't work with nptl
1187 xscreensaver show nothing in the options
1186 output of rc.d scripts can't be read on a white terminal
1185 [ntpd]: add step-sync time when starting
1184 pacman resolving in the wrong order
1183 [rc.conf] need to pass options to dhcpcd
1182 Mplayer depends on lame
1181 add LANG support in rc.conf
1180 hotplug should depend on usbutils
1179 dhclient and dhclient-script
1175 Subversion seems broken.
1173 udev suggestion
1169 Support for console map in init scripts.
1168 Grub .95 causes NTFS boot corruption
1167 hydrogen needs rebuild
1163 kwifimanager missing from kdenetwork package
1162 Coding errors in db.c
1160 ripperx doesn't build because of gcc 3.4
1158 unixodbc GUI - again
1156 PHP5 without MySQLi


The format of the newsletter is changing to bi-weekly. There isn't enough news to justify a weekly edition, and we have both become rather busy. Hopefully there will be some new and interesting sections coming up.

Please remember, if you have anything you'd like to be in the newsletter, feel free to email either Jason or myself. We don't always get all the interesting news.

That's it for this week, stay tuned for more exciting Arch Linux news.