Arch Linux Newsletter

September 05, 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. Seti Update
  5. Forum Highlights
  6. Mailing List Highlights
  7. Tur Update
  8. Package Highlights
  9. New Packages
  10. FAQ
  11. Bugs
    1. Closed Bugs
    2. Opened Bugs
  12. Closing

Front Page News

  1. Mirror Admins: Rsync Server Change
    Bandwidth usage has been high lately, so I've split up some services to spread the load. If you are using rsync to mirror the FTP area, please mirror from and NOT Also, if you're running a mirror, let me know and I'll add it the Downloads page.
  2. 0.7-beta1 ISO Released
    The 0.7-beta1 (base only) is now available on the master FTP site, and soon on the mirrors. If you're looking to install Arch or just have time to kill, please help us test it out. Bugs can be thrown at the bug tracker.

This Week in Devland

  1. As per the bug here, Ogg Theora support will be added to xine-lib and mplayer sometime around their next updates.
  2. Tobias Powalowski (tpowa) was accepted onto the dev team. Chaos and mayhem ensued because we now have two developers named Tobias.
  3. wxgtk and wxpython have been upgraded to support gtk2 (but not upgraded to the unstable/development versions). All apps need to be recompiled that depend on them (all wxgtk apps, not all wxpython apps). If your favourite app doesn't work, please submit a bug report.
  4. Discussion has started about standardizing on a conventions surrounding support files for packages.

Archstats Update

To Participate, visit:

Number of registered systems: 603
Date first system was registered: 20031017
Most recent update occurred: 20040905
Longest recorded uptime: 194 days, 4 hours, 20 minutes, 15 seconds.
Average uptime: 5 days, 12 hours, 41 minutes, 0 seconds.
Lowest kernel version: 2.4.21
Highest kernel version:
Least packages installed on a system: 44
Average installed packages: 275
Most packages installed on a system: 733

Seti@Home Update

To Participate, visit:

1) wojtek: 3.471 years
2) gusgizmo: 3.091 years
3) jakenull: 1.640 years
4) Pink Draco: 6398 hr 45 min
5) TORIN Daniel: 1.010 years
6) cgill27: 1.175 years
7) khaos: 2.287 years
8) Nikolas: 1752 hr 11 min
9) Steady: 1183 hr 50 min
10) CrAsH: 399 hr 16 min
11) Atriqus: 127 hr 06 min
12) Piotr Sadowski: 83 hr 36 min
13) -: 119 hr 10 min
14) Kritoke: 0 hr 00 min

Forum Highlights

  1. GI Josh asked the common question: "Will Arch have a STABLE repository with just security fixes". The answer, as always, is: maybe at some point. The developers would like a STABLE repo, but none have the time to maintain one at this point. Right now, it is past 1.0 on the roadmap. There have been a few projects started to create a STABLE repo, but none of them are past the planning stage.
  2. jonathantan86 wanted HWD to move to current. He said it should be part of the default installation so people could set up their hardware. The general opinion seems to be that users of Arch should know their hardware, and shouldn't need HWD just to set up their computers. HWD was moved to EXTRA so people wouldn't have to use STAGING just to get it.
  3. With the help of the forum members, I've created an Arch Artwork package. I've posted a beta in the forum thread, and I'd like some more feedback before I move it to STAGING. If you see anything that's missing, or you'd like to add your own artwork, now is a good time to comment.
  4. After Tim Goff raised the suggestion, Tehdely created a Pacman patch to make Pacman chomp. It provides a cute pacman-eating-dots animation inside the progress bars instead of the normal lines. No official word on whether this will be included in Pacman.

Mailing List Highlights

  1. Hollywoodb posted a few suggestions for Arch. This raised a big discussion. Most of his suggestions were common complaints, and there are valid reasons for why they exist. Xentac answered the questions very well, and you should read his reply along with all the others.

TUR Update

  1. Scribus hit 1.2 FINAL this week, so it moved from scribus-devel to scribus. As an added bonus, it was moved to EXTRA. So everyone check it out. It's a great DTP tool.

Package Highlights

  1. Fluxbox Devel was updated to 0.9.10 this week. 0.9.10 includes many bug fixes and features. Read the changelog for the full details.
  2. Englightenment 16.7.1 was packaged. E16 is alive again! According to the news page, this is the "biggest release since DR16 first debuted".

New Packages


  1. Q: What is the difference between the BASE ISO and the FULL ISO?
    A: The BASE ISO contains just CURRENT. It is a base set of packages that will get your system up and running. Although the FULL ISO contains many packages that you'll probably want, it gets out of date very quickly. The ideal and recommended installation method is to install the BASE ISO and then install every other package from Pacman (don't forget to Pacman -Syu often, too!). This way, you always get the latest packages, rather than the 6 month old ones provided on the ISO.
  2. Q: What is the difference between CRUX LINUX and ARCH LINUX?
    A: According to Judd:
    I used Crux before starting Arch. Arch started out as Crux, pretty much. Then I wrote pacman and makepkg to replace my bash pseudo packaging scripts (I built Arch as an LFS system to begin). So the two are completely separate distros, but technically, they're almost the same. We have dependency support (officially) for example, although Crux has a community that provides other features. CLC's prt-get will do rudimentary dependency logic. Crux gets to ignore lots of problems we have too, since it's a very minimalistic package set, basically what Per uses and nothing else.


Bugs Closed

1315 Valgrind does not work on linux
1203 VALGRIND 2.0.0 / NPTL
1360 bigloo incompatible with current glibc?
581 wxWindows changed their name to wxWidgets
1290 jack needs recompile for readline 5
1222 latest MonoDevelop is not a smooth update [see inside for quick fix]
459 motion-control in motion
1366 gconf-2.0.pc is not in the PKG_CONFIG_PATH
1023 emovix has bad directory permissions
1289 korganizer doesn't start
1361 Eagle-USB SagemFast800 Driver
1357 PCRE UTF-8 support
1344 wdm binary using /usr/etc
1214 Evolution 1.4.6 need patches with gcc 3.4.1
1345 Jpilot fails to start with libreadline error
1338 gnumeric links to libssl 0.9.6 - needs rebuild
1333 samba package - needs some things suid
1347 The floppy entry in fstab is wrong
1337 pilot-link links to readline 4 - in testing?
1346 sshd does not work out of the box
1343 sudo doesn't list sudo.pam in its sources
1342 Add /etc/sudoers to NoUpgrade
1335 mawk will not build
288 blender fails with make errors 1 & 2
1327 return from
1330 gtk2-perl PKBUILD make-depends pkgs that don't exists
1328 package conflict gDesklets and planner
1304 Maxima needs clisp=2.31
1318 Packages termcap (extra) conflicts with ncurses (base)
1317 pygame requires "numeric"
1201 tuxnes should be in emulators
1293 gst-plugins recompile for latest musicbrainz
1264 rhythmbox - no music
1298 prelink pkgbuild does not include prelink.conf in pacakge
1303 gst-register should be run after installation of gstreamer and gst-plugins
775 Install freezes on grub installation with XFS
1291 guile recompile for readline 5
1032 Srcpac. Making packages with dash in the name. Problem.
1253 trap on nessus-mkcert
987 libnss-mysql+pacman woes
1296 Bad symbolic source link in kernel26-
1292 XMMS headers needs patch for gcc 3.4
1294 please update kernel26-scsi to latest changes in ide-version
870 updatesync, to update dbs instead of generating everything
1288 xine needs rebuild against new readline
1221 udev: uses binaries from /usr/bin

Bugs Opened

1381 freetype2 postinstall depends on fontconfig
1380 atk in current is development version
1379 mp32ogg cannot resolve dependancy string-shellquote
1378 lmule does not run: not found
1377 Audacity broken
1376 lmule links with old wxgtk
1375 pdksh errors changing /etc/shells
1374 tftp-hpa fails to start from rc.d
1373 sample config file for dnsmasq
1372 enviroment variables
1371 vpython
1370 hydrogen links to readline4
1369 ssmtp-2.48-1 installs config files in /usr/etc and is very out-of-date
1368 imlib-1.9.14-4 puts config files in /usr/etc
1367 pacman -Ql reports files not there (nvidia)
1365 mozilla-gtkmozembed.pc is not in the PKG_CONFIG_PATH
1364 librep links to readline4
1363 gnome-pilot links to readline4
1362 cdcd links to readline4 instead of readline5
1359 TUR repo list in /etc/pacman.d/tur?
1358 RDF feed for news section ?
1356 inkscape crashes on start
1355 Allow 'pacman -Qil '
1354 build nedit against open motif instead of lesstif
1353 Moon-lander.. Broken Package... Poor Package
1352 traceroute in /usr/bin
1351 valknut
1350 valknut
1349 valknut
1348 [PATCH] Remove orphans not explicitly installed
1341 some kde bins/libs link to readline4 (was: also libknewstuff)
1340 ruby links to readline 4 - needs rebuild
1339 passepartout links to nonexistent files
1336 Enlightenment cand find gnome menus
1334 Add xjed to jed package
1332 hotplug package missing dep info
1331 more extutils-pkgconfig dependencies (perl)
1329 ppp-2.4.2 bug: "... Terminating on signal 15." floods syslog
1326 0.7 installer - mountpoints and DONE
1325 0.7 installer - sync before grub
1299 prelink cannot work with non-PIC library 'libz'
1297 Nautilus fails to display smb:/// locations
1295 kdebase needs a rebuild to work with the new samba 3.0.6


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.