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Just wanted to update everyone who showed interest in the new release of GNOME Developer Kit I announced yesterday. Based on some preliminary statistics I collected in the (less than) last 24 hours, it seems that the VMware image type got the most download, followed closely by the installable ISO format. I guess that was due to VirtualBox being able to use *.vmdk files and some people opting for the free virtualization tool.

Here are the preliminary results so far:

  1. VMware image: 42 downloads
  2. Installable ISO: 26 downloads
  3. RAW filesystem image: 17 downloads

[caption id=”attachment_825” align=”aligncenter” width=”300” caption=”About GNOME 2.29.92”]About GNOME 2.29.92[/caption]

Due to the number of downloads and and comments I received, I felt that I should provide with some background on how to install/remove packages and update your system using the conary package management system. So here you go:

The package management system behind the GNOME Developer Kit is called conary and is considered by many as the next generation package management system when compared to some of the popular options out there. One of the reasons behind this claim is the fact that your entire system is actually completely maintained in a versioned state, and conary is always “aware” of what is installed on your system and what files and dependencies make up the entire “set”. This allows for some pretty nifty operations such as rolling back to a specific state of your system.

In order to check for new updates for your system, open a terminal and run the command sudo conary updateall. conary will then check for updates and prompt you to accept the update or not. Please keep in mind that the first time you run conary for the first time, you will experience a delay as your entire system gets analyzed in preparation for the changes that are to take place. All subsequent actions performed will be much faster, I promise. If after a while you don’t feel like waiting for the prompt, add —no-interactive to the update command to have your system updated automatically.

Now, let’s just say that you decided to install something new, such as Banshee. Easy, just run sudo conary update banshee (remember to add —no-interactive for no-hands updates) and voilá!

Want to know what was actually installed on your system? conary q banshee will tell you what version of banshee was installed. How about what files were installed? conary q —ls banshee will give you a list of all the files that were installed and conary q —lsl banshee will give you the long list with file permissions and modes.

Changed your mind and want to remove banshee from your system? sudo conary erase banshee will take care of that. Want to actually roll your system back to the state it was before you installed banshee instead? sudo conary rollback 1 will rollback your system exactly one transaction. Want to go further back? Just increase that number to represent how many transactions to roll back. Want to rollback but don’t remember what point in time you want to go? sudo conary rblist will display a list of all transactions and what was changed. Note that each transaction is preceded by the letter “r”, so if you want to rollback to the point r.15, then use sudo conary rollback r.15 (and don’t forget that “r” or you’ll rollback exactly 15 transactions instead).

How about searching for a package? If it is something that it is already installed on your system, then conary q [package name] will give you the information you want. If the package is not installed on your system yet, then conary rq [package name] is what you need, though since conary does not yet make use of metadata, you’ll need to know the exact name of what you’re looking for. Now, let’s say you want to find out what package provides the command /sbin/service? Use conary q —path /sbin/service to find out that initscripts:runtime=8.81.2-0.11-1 is responsible for providing it (use rq if you want to search the remote repository).

Well, I think this is enough to get you going. You’ll probably want to install Flash and media codecs to enjoy browsing some sites and listening to your media, so let’s apply what we’ve learned so far and run: sudo conary update flashplayer group-codecs

If you’ve stayed with me until now, you may want to read up on what else conary can do or even consider packaging for GNOME Developer Kit. Your help will be greatly appreciated!


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