Arch Linux Newsletter

Feb 11, 2007
Jason Chu
Jason "CanyonKnight"


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. Devland
  3. Forum Highlights
  4. Mailing List Highlights
  5. Package Highlights
  6. FAQ
  7. ArchStats
  8. Seti@home
  9. folding@home
  10. Bugs
  11. Closing

Front Page News

  1. kernel 2.6.20 hits testing

    Kernel 2.6.20 series is now in testing, it will be the kernel series for 0.8 release so please test this stuff well before it can go into current repository.

    Console framebuffers added:
    - to use the other framebuffers, disable vesa first in boot managervideo=vesa:off
    - load the correct framebuffer module from MODULES= in rc.conf

    - Recent Changes:
    Upstream Changes

    Have fun and report bugs

  2. New Nvidia packages

    In testing there are now 3 nvidia packages:

    Please check if you card is still supported in latest nvidia driver, else install the nvidia-96xx.

    nvidia-legacy is now replaced by nvidia-71xx

  3. DBUS upgrade requires restarting dbus

    As some people have found out the hard way, dbus and all programs that connect to it (hal, powersave, avahi, etc) have to be restarted after the dbus 1.0 upgrade. Without restarting, the uuid file in /var/lib/dbus will be missing and applications could exit with a dbus error message. Following the advice from this error message will work out also.

  4. Warning: Upcoming dbus upgrade will kill outdated gnome sessions

    We're planning to upgrade dbus to 1.0.x in a short while. The new configuration files used by dbus 1.0.x is incompatible with the version in our repositories, which causes dbus to crash as soon as it tries to reload the configuration.

    Due to a bug in gnome-session and the XFCE Terminal program, these programs will crash together with dbus. This bug has been fixed on January 23 in both gnome-session and Terminal.

    When upgrading your system to dbus 1.0.x from either XFCE Terminal or Gnome with the affected packages dated before Januari 23rd, be warned that you will lose all unsaved work affected by these crashes (gnome-session drops to the console and hard-quits all your active programs, Terminal only kills all active Terminal sessions). A solution is to upgrade from outside of these programs, or, to upgrade to the latest versions of these packages, restarting these programs and then upgrade dbus.

  5. djbdns and daemontools to be moved to unsupported

    Because the license requirements for binary distribution of DJB software is burdensome, Arch Linux will cease to distribute these programs from the main repositories on February 4, 2007.

    The PKGBUILD materials for these packages will be added to the unsupported section of the AUR. Please contact me if you are interested in maintaining them there.


  1. Kevin Piche is gone on a cruise. Lucky him. He'll be gone till the 12th.
  2. Arch64 will be having major rebuilds. Make sure that you recompile any self-built packages.
  3. Woody Gilk (Shadowhan) resigned. He wants to keep up with arch but doesn't have the time to maintain packages anymore.
  4. Linuxtag 2007 will be May 30 - June 2. Alex is trying to convince as many developers as he can to work the booth. Watch this space for more information.

Forum Highlights

  1. T-Dawg wanted to know about anyone's experiences with dir_index.
  2. Pierluigi worked on a script to recreate a pacman database using the log file.
  3. vogo made an experimental patch that brings color to pacman.
  4. Jacek Poplawski wanted to know what OpenGL games people play.

Mailing List Highlights

  1. Massive updates are expected for Arch64.
  2. Discussion on using Arch Linux as a dial-up user.

Package Highlights


Q: What is the difference between all the different repositories?

A: The [current] repository is the location of the packages available off of the install CD. The [extra] repository is the collection of packages that are outside of the install CD but maintained by the Arch Linux Developers. When a package is to be tested before release to [extra] or [current] it is placed in [testing]. [unstable] is the collection of packages considered to be unstable by the developers, but popular enough to be packaged for distribution. Finally the [community] repository is the location of packages that are in the AUR and have been adopted by a Trusted User who has packaged them for download.

More information here.

Q: Why aren't all packages in UNSUPPORTED added to COMMUNITY?

A: There are several reasons for that. The most important is that the package hasn't got many votes. It's also important that you vote for packages that already are in COMMUNITY, otherwise they could be disowned by the TUs and moved to UNSUPPORTED. Other reasons could be that the package is unmaintained upstream or has a licensing problem. Last but not least, no TU wants to do it.


To Participate, visit:

Number of registered systems: 1256
Longest recorded uptime: 494 days, 3 hours, 29 minutes, 25 seconds.
Average uptime: 16 days, 1 hour, 27 minutes, 5 seconds.
Average installed packages: 458
Average system memory: 764MB
Slowest CPU (MHz): 198.68
Average CPU (MHz): 1767.46
Fastest CPU (MHz): 3596.99


To Participate, visit:

Members: 16
Total credit: 497,566.55


Arch Linux Team Page
Extended Team Statistics

Team Number: 45032
Members: 97
Score: 1635604
Ranking: 355 of 47500



That's it for this time folks. If you have any opinions on the newsletter or have some things you wanna add, just send us a mail and we'll look into it.
Very best regards / Team Arch