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Package Management

Cucumber Linux uses Slackware's package management scripts. Documentation regarding them can be found at

Update Management

The update manager for Cucumber Linux is called the Package Installer for Cucumber Kernels, Libraries and Executables (or Pickle for short). This is a simple shell script that attempts to manage the system updates for you. It isn't completely stable yet, so it is a good idea to also keep an eye on the changelog to make sure you aren't missing any updates.

Setting up Pickle

Pickle (like most other update managers) stores a local cache of the package and update list. Before actually installing or updating packages, it is necessary to refresh this local cache (otherwise you could end up installing old packages). This is done by running pickle --update. It is important to note that this should be done routinely. It is a good idea to update your cache before running Pickle every time.

Updating the System

To display a list of available updates, simply run pickle --update && pickle. This will display an interactive list of updates for you to install. Select the packages you want to update and select 'Ok'. Pickle will then download and update the selected packages.

It is important to note that a package's configuration files may be overwritten during the update process, so it's a good idea to back up any important configuration files (which are generally found in /etc) before updating a package. These files may or may not be preserved, depending on the package. A list of files belonging to a given package can be obtained by running pkgtool, selecting “View” and then selecting the package you wish to view the files for.

Any packages that are not selected for update can optionally be added to the ignore list. This will prevent Pickle from displaying these updates in the future. If you decide to install these updates in the future, it will first be necessary to reset this ignore list. This is done by running pickle --hard-update.

A Note About Update Types

Pickle employs four different types of updates: update, new, new/up and install. The type for a specific update appears before the package name (e.g. install:linux-4.4.34-x86_64-1.txz). Each update type has a different meaning, as follows:

  • Update: these packages contain updates for packages that are already installed. It updates the package using upgradepkg, so the old package will be uninstalled. Pickle will prompt you to install an update only if you already have an older version of the package installed. These updates usually consist of bug fixes and security fixes, so you should install these updates unless you have a good reason not to.
  • Install: these packages also contain updates, however unlike update, these packages will show up regardless of whether or not you have a previous version installed. Additionally, these packages are installed using installpkg, so old versions are not overwritten. This is useful in particular for kernel updates, in which it is generally desirable to leave the old kernels installed in case the update doesn't work properly. This method is usually only used for kernel security patches, so you really should install these.
  • New: these packages are new packages that have been added to the Cucumber Linux repositories since you last ran Pickle. They are really announcements that these packages are now available, not updates. Whether or not you wish to install these packages is completely up to you.
  • New/up: This is a mix between new and update. These will appear on the update list even if the package is already installed. If the package is already installed, it will be updated. If it is not, it will be installed. This update type is usually only used development versions of the distribution and when upgrading from one major version to another. Unless you really know what you're doing, these packages should be installed; otherwise you may end up with a broken system.

Installing Packages

Pickle allows you to install new packages as well. Simply run 'pickle <package>'. This will search the list of available packages and display all packages whose name contains the package name you specified. Select the package(s) you want to install and select 'Ok'.

package_management.txt · Last modified: 2018/12/31 16:28 by z5t1