[arch-general] pacman new generation

Piyush P Kurur ppk at cse.iitk.ac.in
Tue Nov 22 12:33:32 EST 2011

On Tue, Nov 22, 2011 at 05:16:27PM +0100, Nicolas Sebrecht wrote:
> The 22/11/11, Piyush P Kurur wrote:

> Notice I'm not the OP show suggested porting pacman to Haskell. I came
> into this thread after the facts and tried hard to make the original
> suggestion as a part of the larger POV in favor of high-level languages.

Writing system managing tools in Haskell is not a bad suggestion at
all. You might have read about Linspire/Freespire which is a debian
based distro having a substantial part written in Haskell (I have not
used it so I dont know how much of a success it was).

> Also, I don't want to flame and rather keep the discussion out of free
> attacks against the current team of developers. I took part of this
> thread only because I've already been faced to pacman limitations in its
> current form.

NixOS uses a radically differnet and, in my opinion, brilliant idea to
support Rollbacks (again I have not used NixOS but have read about
them). It keeps all the packages in a different directory called
/store if I remember right.  Each package is installed in a
directory of its own like 


where the hash will depend on the package source and config options.

This kind of architecture allows lots of interesting stuff like user
installation and secure sharing of installations by users, multiple
versions of the same file, automatic shared library dependency besides
atomic rollbacks of course. Overall it is a very promising idea which
is also working well (I think) in practice. There are drawbacks of
course like large harddisk space for example.

Now how much of this will fit with Arch. Very little. Arch has a very
different structure. Pacman was not written with this kind of a goal.
So I dont see an easy way all this can be achieved with a structure
like Arch.

Having a great package management is only one part of the story, one
still needs the good quality packages. And that is the really hard



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