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Revision 1.13, Mon Dec 3 21:33:56 2001 UTC (17 years, 10 months ago) by agc
Branch: MAIN
CVS Tags: pkgviews-base, pkgviews, netbsd-1-6-RELEASE-base, netbsd-1-6-1-base, netbsd-1-6-1, netbsd-1-6, netbsd-1-5-PATCH003, buildlink2-base, buildlink2
Changes since 1.12: +5 -3 lines

Update a sentence which used to talk about mk.conf.example to explain the
use of bsd.pkg.defaults.mk. Pointed out by jhawk.

$NetBSD: README,v 1.13 2001/12/03 21:33:56 agc Exp $

Welcome to the NetBSD Packages Collection

In brief, the NetBSD Packages Collection is a set of software
utilities and libraries which have been ported to NetBSD.

The packages collection software can retrieve the software from its
home site, assuming you are connected in some way to the Internet,
verify its integrity, apply any patches, configure the software for
NetBSD, and build it.  Any prerequisite software will also be built
and installed for you.  Installation and de-installation of software
is managed by the packaging utilities.

The packages collection is made into a tar_file every week: 


and you can sup the pkgsrc tree using the `pkgsrc' name for the

The pkgsrc tree is laid out in various categories, and, within that,
the various packages themselves.

You need to have root privileges to install packages.  We are looking
at ways to remove this restriction.

+ To install a package on your system, you need to change into the
directory of the package, and type "make install".

+ If you've made a mistake, and decided that you don't want that
package on your system, then type "pkg_delete <pkg-name>", or "make
deinstall" while in the directory for the package.

+ To find out all the packages that you have installed on your system,
type "pkg_info".

+ To remove the work directory, type "make clean", and "make
clean-depends" will clean up any working directories for other
packages that are built in the process of making your package.

+ Optionally, you can periodically run "make clean" from the top
level pkgsrc directory. This will delete extracted and built files,
but will not affect the retreived source sets in pkgsrc/distfiles.

+ You can set variables to customise the behaviour (where packages are
installed, various options for individual packages etc), by setting
variables in /etc/mk.conf.  The pkgsrc/mk/bsd.pkg.defaults.mk gives
the defaults which are used in pkgsrc.  This file can be used as a
guide to set values in /etc/mk.conf - it is only necessary to set
values where they differ from the defaults.

The best way to find out what packages are in the collection is to
move to the top-level pkgsrc directory (this will usually be
/usr/pkgsrc), and type "make readme".  This will create a file called
README.html in the top-level pkgsrc directory, and also in all
category and package directories.  You can then see what packages are
available, along with a short (one-line) comment about the function of
the package, and a pointer to a fuller description, by using a browser
like lynx (see pkgsrc/www/lynx) or Mozilla (pkgsrc/www/mozilla), or
Communicator.  This is also available online as

Another way to find out what packages are in the collection is to
move to the top-level pkgsrc directory and type "make index". This
will create pkgsrc/INDEX which can be viewed via "make print-index | more".
You can also search for particular packages or keywords via
"make search key=<somekeyword>".

It is also possible to use the packaging software to install
pre-compiled binary packages by typing "pkg_add <URL-of-binary-pkg>". 
To see what binary packages are available, see:


where <release> is the NetBSD release, and <arch> is the hardware

One limitation of using binary packages provided from ftp.netbsd.org
is that all mk.conf options were set to the defaults at compile time.
LOCALBASE, in particular, defaults to /usr/pkg, so non-X binaries
will be installed in /usr/pkg/bin, man pages will be installed in

When a packaged tool has major compile time choices, such as support
for multiple graphic toolkit libraries, the different options may
be available as separate packages.

For more information on the packages collection see the file
Packages.txt file in the same place where you found this README,
usually in the top-level pkgsrc dir.