Respository and Section and Mirrors
Repository in the context of PCLinuxOS means the central storage of all software available for PCLinuxOS. Sections are just categories within the repository to help in classifying and maintaining the repository. Mirrors are exact copies of the repository available for selection based on your location / speed of access to any of them. Introduction
Repository generally means a kind of storage. In our case it is the location where we can find software for PCLinuxOS. Repository can be of 2 types in general - online or local.
Online : This is the general repository of PCLinuxOS available to all users. Regular users of PCLinuxOS should only be bothered about this type. Local : This is a special type of repository created and maintained by advanced users themselves in their local disks. Generally, by packagers and sometimes testers.
PCLinuxOS has only 2 online type repositories :
PCLinuxOS : This is the main repository of PCLinuxOS hosting all of its software. There are different Sections within this repository namely : • main • updates • nonfree • games • kde • xfce4 • testing • special Megagames : This is the special repository exclusively for games.
NOTE : Unlike many other Linux distributions where software is obtained from different repositories depending on the type or origin of software etc., PCLinuxOS uses only 2 repositories for all of its software. There are subsections inside this repository creating subcategories. The result being that all software is available at all times to all users.
However, PCLinuxOS has many mirrors for its repository so that you could always find a fast one near to you. Sections
The PCLinuxOS repository stores a lot of software. In order to make the management of this vast repository easier for the administrators and interested users, it is subdivided into various sections as outlined above. Below is a brief description of each section.
main : It is the place for packages not specifically related to something else = kde, for example. updates : It contains the more recently updated software that is not specifically related to something else. nonfree : This is the place for non-free software that we have permission to distribute. games : Self explanatory. kde : Software specific to or part of KDE desktop environment. xfce4 : Software specific to or part of XFCE desktop environment. testing : Holds all the packaged software which is pending rigorous testing prior to moving to an appropriate sections as named above. It is a RESERVED section. special : It contains a few things we don't want in the normal repositories. This section is not enabled by default. This section is for those special needs users such as those who want wine unstable or freetype2 with bytecode enabled or minitube that doesn't work with kde4 phonon-xine backend. Normally one enables this section installs what they need then disables it as to not pull in other things they do not want installed. It is a RESERVED section.
In the KDE flavors of PCLinuxOS the following sections are enabled by default :
main updates nonfree kde games xfce4
The sections enabled for you can be viewed and changed by going to Synaptic > Settings > Repositories > Click and highlight the selected mirror for PCLinuxOS repository > View / modify the Section(s) text box.
You should at any point of time enable only ONE mirror for the PCLinuxOS repository. As Megagames is a separate repository, it can be enabled side by side with the PCLinuxOS repository. If you are a regular user, you will not have to do any changes to the sections during routine running / updating / maintenance of PCLinuxOS.
Mirrors are exact duplicates of the main PCLinuxOS repository provided by different online hosts for the convenience of users. They are used to take the load off the main server. A mirror nearer to your location may also generally be faster in access speeds.
Changing mirrors can be done by the following method :
Open Synaptic > Settings > Repositories. Here you will get a window with scrollable list of repositories. Put a tick mark against the mirror of your choice. (Note that as explained above, even though it seems to be a list of repositories, in case of PCLinuxOS it actually is just a list of mirrors except for the first megagames repository.) You should have only 2 boxes with selection marker in the whole list. One should be for the PCLinuxOS repository and another for the Megagames repository. Depending on your location and speed of the mirror, you may select anyone, they are all the same. Remember to Reload Synaptic if you change the mirror before proceeding with any update or software installation.
NOTE - A latest updated list is found in the file /etc/apt/sources.list (this list given below is updated as of 01/14/2013)
The lines without # symbol are selected repositories in the list below :
rpm http://ftp.nluug.nl/pub/os/Linux/distr/pclinuxos/ megagames megagames rpm http://ftp.nluug.nl/pub/os/Linux/distr/pclinuxos/pclinuxos/apt/ pclinuxos/2010 main updates nonfree kde games xfce4
- rpm http://pclinuxos.fi/pub/linux/ 2010 main updates nonfree kde games xfce4
- rpm http://ftp.belnet.be/pclinuxonline.com/pclinuxos/apt/ pclinuxos/2010 main updates nonfree kde games xfce4
- rpm http://ftp.cc.uoc.gr/mirrors/linux/pclinuxos/pclinuxos/apt/ pclinuxos/2010 main updates nonfree kde games xfce4
- rpm http://ftp-srv2.kddilabs.jp/Linux/packages/pclinuxos/pclinuxos/apt/ pclinuxos/2010 main updates nonfree kde games xfce4
- rpm http://distrib-coffee.ipsl.jussieu.fr/pub/linux/pclinuxos/pclinuxos/apt/ pclinuxos/2010 main updates nonfree kde games xfce4
- rpm http://ftp.heanet.ie/pub/pclinuxos/pclinuxos/apt/ pclinuxos/2010 main updates nonfree kde games xfce4
- rpm http://ftp2.ie.freesbie.org/pub/pclinuxos/pclinuxos/apt/ pclinuxos/2010 main updates nonfree kde games xfce4
- rpm http://mirror.internode.on.net/pub/pclinuxos/pclinuxos/apt/ pclinuxos/2010 main updates nonfree kde games xfce4
- rpm http://kambing.ui.ac.id/pclinuxos/pclinuxos/apt/ pclinuxos/2010 main updates nonfree kde games xfce4
- rpm http://ftp.klid.dk/ftp/pclinuxos/apt/ pclinuxos/2010 main updates nonfree kde games xfce4
- rpm http://mirror.aarnet.edu.au/pub/pclinuxos/apt/ pclinuxos/2010 main updates nonfree kde games xfce4
- rpm http://ftp.jaist.ac.jp/pub/Linux/PCLinuxOS/apt/ pclinuxos/2010 main updates nonfree kde games xfce4
- rpm http://pclinuxos.c3sl.ufpr.br/pclinuxos/apt/ pclinuxos/2010 main updates nonfree kde games xfce4
PCLinuxOS Synaptic File/Software Mirror Status Report http://www.pclinuxos.com/forum/index.php/topic,87378.0.html
This section is for some advanced information regarding the directory structure of PCLinuxOS repository.
As a reference please open a new tab and navigate to http://ftp.nluug.nl/pub/os/Linux/distr/pclinuxos/pclinuxos/apt/pclinuxos/2010/ If you look at the directory structure, we could make out those directory names beginning with
RPMS : These directories have the final .rpm files needed for installation of named software at end user systems. SRPMS : These directories have the .src.rpm files containing the original source code and .spec file needed to build the .rpm found in the above directory. These are the directories where all the new packagers should be heading to in order to obtain reference .spec files and working build examples. base : This directory essentially contains the index files to all of the software found in the repository.