Pkgng and pc-metapkgmanager/10.0

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PC-BSD® uses pkgng, the next generation package management system for FreeBSD. All of the PC-BSD® utilities that deal with installing or updating non-PBI software now use the pkgng system. This allows users to safely install non-PBI software from the command line without that software being deleted by a system upgrade.

If you are used to using the traditional FreeBSD package system, take note that the commands used to install and manage software differ slightly. For example, instead of using pkg_add to install a package from a remote repository, use pkg install or pc-pkg install (notice there is now a space instead of an underscore).

The FreeBSD Handbook[1] provides an introduction to using pkgng. Section 5.5.1 is not needed on a PC-BSD® or TrueOS® system as the operating system installation does this for you. The various pkgng commands have associated man pages. Type man pkg for an overview of general usage; the names of the associated man pages will be found towards the bottom of this man page. Once you know the name of a command, you can also use the built-in help system to get more information about that command. For example, to learn more about pkg install, type pkg help install.


pc-metapkgmanager is the back-end command line utility used by the PC-BSD® installer, Package Manager, and Warden® to manage meta-packages. Meta-packages are like system components, and include supported and unsupported desktops, development utilities, hardware drivers, and miscellaneous applications such as XBMC.

The pc-metapkgmanager command can be used to install or delete meta-packages. If you type the command without any options, it will display its usage:


usage: pc-metapkgmanager [options] Options: add mpkg1,mpkg2 -- Add the specified list of meta-packages del mpkg1,mpkg2 -- Delete the specified list of meta-packages list -- List the available meta-packages list-installed -- Only list the installed meta-packages pkgdeps <mpkg> -- List package dependancies for the specified meta-package status <mpkg> -- List the status of the specified meta-packages  

--pkgset <pkgset> -- Change default pkgset we are using

To determine which meta-packages are available:

pc-metapkgmanager list | more

Meta Package: Awesome

Description: A highly configurable, next generation framework window manager Icon: /usr/local/share/pcbsd/metaset/pcbsd/Awesome/pkg-icon.png Parent: Unsupported-Desktops Desktop: YES Required Packages: pcbsd-meta-awesome Meta Package: Cinnamon

Description: The Cinnamon Desktop Icon: /usr/local/share/pcbsd/metaset/pcbsd/Cinnamon/pkg-icon.png Parent: Unsupported-Desktops Desktop: YES Required Packages: pcbsd-meta-cinnamon

--More--(byte 989)

To determine if a meta-package is installed, specify its "Meta Package" name as shown in the output of the pc-metapkgmanager list command. For example, to see if the Awesome desktop is installed:

pc-metapkgmanager status Awesome The meta-pkg Awesome is not installed                                       

To install the meta-package, use the add option and specify the meta-package name. Only the superuser can install meta-packages.

The following example installs the Awesome meta-package. pc-metapkgmanager will provide messages regarding the status of the installation:

pc-metapkgmanager add Awesome

Pending Meta-Package changes: 1 Installing Meta-Package: Awesome (pcbsd-meta-awesome) The following packages will be installed: <snip package list> The meta-pkg Awesome is installed Extracting ports overlay data...DONE Finished Meta-Package: Awesome

Meta-Package changes finished!

To delete an installed meta-package, specify its name. Only the superuser can uninstall meta-packages.

pc-metapkgmanager del Awesome

Pending Meta-Package changes: 1 Removing Meta-Package: Awesome Removing: pcbsd-meta-awesome The meta-pkg Awesome is not installed                                       

Meta-Package changes finished!


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