pkgcore experience

Last days I reinstalled my Gentoo in my desktop computer, a Dell Dimension C521 using the new package handler pkgcore.

The last months I’ve use official portage, and also new replacement called paludis. The main advantage of this one is being written entirely in C++, so paludis is very fast, but also you can detect some problems when you need to compile some “specials” packages, such qemu, which requires to be compiled with gcc3. If you compile paludis with another version of gcc, you can find a beauty error related to dynamic linking. Obviously, you can solve this problem by hand or with sonme tricks ;), but I don’t like tricks in production machines.

This week I finished to install my desktop computer using pkgcore. Pkgcore is another replacement of portage, written in python, but with some critical pieces in C (yes, the old reliable C), and I was surprised with the status of the development. The last time I had seen pkgcore was really unstable and very confusing for me, so I was decided to try paludis, which was more stable and mature. But, in this case, pkgcore exceeded my expectations.

In my opinion the strengths of pkgcore are:

  • fast (similar to paludis, in my experience)
  • easy to use (portage compatible syntax)
  • portage compatible configuration
  • agnostics about compiler (avoid the qemu problem)
  • well colored πŸ˜€

But nobody is perfect, so pkgcore has some disadvantages also:

  • Arg! configuration file is the hell!
  • Errors has special syntax, you need some practice to understand
  • Very strict with no-clean packages in portage (for example when install into /lib instead to use get_lib_dir). I’m not sure if it’s a real disadvantage.

I put my pkgcore.conf file in pastebin. I hope to be usefull πŸ™‚

4 thoughts on “pkgcore experience

  1. The ini format you used is pretty damn low level- frankly there isn’t any reason to drop down to that level unless you actually need to do something fairly crazy.

    Even then, you can intermix formats easily enough- in other words you could do an ini override of make.conf for example.

    Either way, ini is not the intended format for majority of users- it’s pretty much the intended format for if you need to do something fairly hanky (remote configuration, complex cache setups, etc).

  2. Wel, I want to manage my repositories using pkgcore directly, without layman (only for testing :D) and I think that need pkgcore.conf to do it. 😦

    Am i right to do so?

  3. I don’t even use pkgcore.conf, just the existing make.conf from portage.

  4. OMG! The configuration file is a good reason not to use pkgcore… yet πŸ˜€

    I took a quick look at Pkgcore recently, but for now Paludis is doing a good job for me, so I will stick with it at least until a saner configuration syntax is added to Pkgcore – and no, the Portage compatibility is not enough for me, hehe.

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