Arch Linux Newsletter

Mar 18, 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. Testing moved to current/extra

    The contents of Testing have been moved to the current and extra repositories today. This means python 2.5, DB 4.5, wxGTK 2.8, PostgreSQL 8.2 and all the packages that have to be updated for these updates have been merged into current and extra.

    As this move involves many packages which take many megabytes, some mirrors can have problems catching up with this amount of updates.

    Though we have taken care of most rebuilds, it is possible that we missed a package. A package you use and which is broken now. If you encounter such packages, please report them to our bugtracker.

    One note about DB finally: All your Berkely DB based databases need to be upgraded by using the "db_upgrade" tool shipped with the db package. This involves things like SVN repositories, OpenLDAP databases, etc. Usually a new major version of Berkeley DB will refuse to work with database files from previous versions, forcing you to upgrade the database files.

  2. kernel26mm returns

    The mm kernel is now reinstated, and has been moved to the [unstable] repo, which is more appropriate to its bleeding edge nature. A limited selection of compatible external modules is provided, namely

    If there is sufficient demand for other modules, I will try to provide them, subject of course to successful compilation against mm. Contact me on email, jabber, or irc with requests or other comments.

    Tom Killian


  1. Dan McGee and Roman Kyrylych have been added as developers. They will be doing spot package updates, but also continuing with their current responsibilities.
  2. A few developers (Aaron, Dale, and Jason) have been given more access to the inner workings of the distribution. Hopefully the other developers won't have to wait on Judd for as many things now.
  3. Our third annual developer meeting concluded 2007-03-17. Lots of things to do with Arch were discussed. We're hoping lots of stuck issues will move forward. More annoucements to come.
  4. Pacbuild has been resurrected. There are a couple people working on it now. While 0.4 was released a little while ago, 0.4.1 will be released in the next few weeks. Once this happens, everyone who used to be a builder for pacbuild will be contacted about using their systems again.
  5. Aaron has started development on an alioth-like ( system for hosting arch linux related projects. He will soon make available the code and a single central place for arch linux projects (devtools, pacbuild, pacman, archboot, archie, srcpac, etc) will finally exist. Initially this system will just support setting up source repositories.
  6. After some heated discussion, arch-repos has started settling down. Most people in the discussion currently are on the same page with respect to the goals of such a restructuring.

Forum Highlights

  1. stonecrest was admiring the updated wiki appearance.
  2. zergu was looking at the possibility of loading an entire application into memory.
  3. [vEX] wanted tools to set functions to the extra buttons manufacturers place on keyboards.
  4. T-Dawg is looking for anyone willing to help out with aurbuild.
  5. fishonadish asked for suggestions on a simple Linux animation program.

Mailing List Highlights

  1. The second release candidate for pacman3 was released.
  2. Getting a USB device to work properly.

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: 1349
Longest recorded uptime: 494 days, 3 hours, 29 minutes, 25 seconds.
Average uptime: 16 days, 1 hour, 10 minutes, 6 seconds.
Average installed packages: 463
Average system memory: 783MB
Slowest CPU (MHz): 175.00
Average CPU (MHz): 1770.27
Fastest CPU (MHz): 3596.97


To Participate, visit:

Members: 19
Total credit: 596,454.16


Arch Linux Team Page
Extended Team Statistics

Team Number: 45032
Members: 104
Score: 1820291
Ranking: 337 of 48080



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