Pacman 3.4.0 Released

As Dan has already posted about, pacman-3.4.0 has been released. There are a bunch of new features that I am really enjoying.

Firstly, when updating it database, pacman will only extract the new entries. This is similar to what Xyne’s rebase script does (without all the extra output). I had not realised how awesome this feature was until I updated my chroots this morning. It speeds the process up immensely. The chroots using pacman-3.4 extracted the [extra] repo database with a barely noticeable pause while those using pacman-3.3 took a while.

The other feature that I am enjoying is the addition of a functional ‘which’ to the file ownership query. In the past, to find the owner of a binary in my path I would do something like pacman -Qo $(which makepkg) or provide the full path manually. Now pacman will search for binaries in your path automatically, so this is achieved with pacman -Qo makepkg.

Installing packages with pacman -U has received a nice overhaul, allowing pacman to handle package replacements and install needed dependencies all in one transaction. No more removing a package with pacman -Rd and then installing its replacement.

And makepkg also received its share of upgrades. It now automatically exits on build/packaging errors in PKGBUILDs so there is no more need to have “|| return 1” after the commands. Package splitting has improved with pkgver, pkgrel and arch now being able to be overridden and being able to only build subsets of a split package.

Of course, many other features made it into this pacman release. As always, many changes will hopefully never be noticed by a user (e.g. checking a package architecture matches the system architecture before installing, a major rewrite of the pacman bash completion, overhaul of tests in makepkg, more configurable library stripping during packaging), but all these are very useful contributions. See here for a more detailed summary of the changes and the git log for all the details of changes.

A pacman-3.4.0 package is currently in the [testing] repository for Arch Linux. We all know pacman releases are bug free (as the two patches already in the 3.4.1 queue can attest), so look forward to it being in a [core] repo near you in the not too distant future.

7 thoughts on “Pacman 3.4.0 Released

    • Hi Allan,

      thanks for the great news, i really love the features that are implemented in the new pacman release.
      Hurray for the pacman devs!

  1. And where is the xdelta support? That’s far more important to me than check packages on path using -Qo. For me, at least. Someone has to disagree :P

    Of course, some of the changes are really welcome, like makepkg automatically exiting on errors, and pacman -U finally replacing packages. Thanks for the release! :)

    • xdelta support was fully functional in pacman-3.3 if not earlier. Arch Linux just does not provide delta packages.