Binary packages in Gentoo

:: binary packages, gentoo, packaging, portage, system

By: Maciej Barć

Binpkgs generated by user

The binary packages generated by user can have architecture-specific optimizations because they are generated after they were compiled by the host Portage installation.

In addition binpkgs are generated from ebuilds so if there is a USE flag incompatibility on the consumer system then the binpkg will not be installed on the host and Portage will fall back to from-source compilation.

Those binary packages can use two formats: XPAK and GPKG.

XPAK had many issues and is getting superseded by the GPKG format. Beware of upcoming GPKG transition and if you must use XPAKs then you should explicitly enable it in your system’s Portage configuration.

To host a binary package distribution server see the Binary package guide on the Gentoo wiki.

Bin packages in a repository

Binary packages in ::gentoo (the official Gentoo repository) have the -bin suffix.

Those packages might have USE flags but generally they are very limited in case of customizations or code optimizations because they were compiled either by a Gentoo developer or by a given package upstream maintainer (or their CI/CD system).

Those packages land in ::gentoo mostly because it is too hard (or even impossible) to compile them natively by Portage. Most of the time those packages use very complicated build systems or do not play nice with network sandbox like (e.g. Scala-based projects) or use very large frameworks/libraries like (e.g. Electron).

They can also be added to the repository because they are very desirable either by normal users (e.g. www-client/firefox-bin) or for (from-source) package bootstrapping purposes (e.g. dev-java/openjdk-bin). Such packages are sometimes generated from the regular source packages inside ::gentoo and later repackaged.

Ebuild lit tests

:: gentoo, ebuild, tutorial, python

By: Maciej Barć

Patching

The file lit.site.cfg has to be inspected for any incorrect calls to executables. For example see src_prepare function form dev-lang/boogie.

Eclasses

Because we will need to specify how many threads should lit run we need to inherit multiprocessing to detect how many parallel jobs the portage config sets.

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inherit multiprocessing

Dependencies

Ensure that dev-python/lit is in BDEPEND, but also additional packages may be needed, for example dev-python/OutputCheck.

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BDEPEND="
    ${RDEPEND}
    test? (
        dev-python/lit
        dev-python/OutputCheck
    )
"

Bad tests

To deal with bad test you can simply remove the files causing the failures.

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local -a bad_tests=(
    civl/inductive-sequentialization/BroadcastConsensus.bpl
    civl/inductive-sequentialization/PingPong.bpl
    livevars/bla1.bpl
)
local bad_test
for bad_test in ${bad_tests[@]} ; do
    rm "${S}"/Test/${bad_test} || die
done

Test phase

--threads $(makeopts_jobs) specifies how many parallel tests to run.

--verbose option will show output of failed tests.

Last lit argument specifies where lit should look for lit.site.cfg and tests.

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src_test() {
    lit --threads $(makeopts_jobs) --verbose "${S}"/Test || die
}

Ebuild-mode

:: gentoo, portage, ebuild, emacs, tutorial, pkgcheck

By: Maciej Barć

Portage

Configure the following for Portage.

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dev-util/pkgcheck emacs

Emerge

Emerge the following packages:

  • app-emacs/company-ebuild
  • dev-util/pkgcheck

Company-Ebuild should pull in app-emacs/ebuild-mode, if that does not happen, then report a bug ;-D

Standard

Add the following to your user's Emacs initialization file. The initialization file is either ~/.emacs.d/init.el or ~/.config/emacs/init.el for newer versions of GNU Emacs.

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(require 'ebuild-mode)
(require 'company-ebuild)
(require 'flycheck)
(require 'flycheck-pkgcheck)

(add-hook 'ebuild-mode-hook 'company-ebuild-setup)
(add-hook 'ebuild-mode-hook 'flycheck-mode)
(add-hook 'ebuild-mode-hook 'flycheck-pkgcheck-setup)

Use-Package

We can also configure our environment using a use-package macro that simplifies the setup a little bit.

To use the below configuration the app-emacs/use-package package will have to be installed.

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(require 'use-package)

(use-package ebuild-mode
  :defer t
  :mode "\\.\\(ebuild\\|eclass\\)\\'"
  :hook
  ((ebuild-mode . company-ebuild-setup)
   (ebuild-mode . flycheck-mode)
   (ebuild-mode . flycheck-pkgcheck-setup)))

The :defer t and :mode "..." enable deferred loading which theoretically speeds up GNU Emacs initialization time at the cost of running the whole use-package block of ebuild-mode configuration when the :mode condition is met.

src_snapshot

:: ebuild, gentoo, portage, prototype

By: Maciej Barć

Prototype

Recently while browsing the Alpine git repo I noticed they have a function called snapshot, see: https://git.alpinelinux.org/aports/tree/testing/dart/APKBUILD#n45 I am not 100% sure about how that works but a wild guess is that the developers can run that function to fetch the sources and maybe later upload them to the Alpine repo or some sort of (cloud?) storage.

In Portage there exists a pkg_config function used to run miscellaneous configuration for packages. The only major difference between src_snapshot and that would of course be that users would never run snapshot.

Sandbox

Probably only the network sandbox would have to be lifted out… to fetch the sources of course.

But also a few (at least one?) special directories and variables would be useful.

Chromium

:: customization

By: Maciej Barć

Dark interface

Force web UI dark mode

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--enable-features=WebUIDarkMode --force-dark-mode

Hardware acceleration

Accelerated video decoding and GPU support

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--enable-accelerated-video-decode --enable-gpu

Reader mode

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--enable-reader-mode

Runtime cache

Use the cache directory /run/user/1000/chrome/cache

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--disk-cache-dir=${XDG_RUNTIME_DIR}/chrome/cache

Window size

Sawn a window of size 1200x900

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--window-size=1200,900

Full config

The file /etc/chromium/default is sourced by the Chromium launcher, that's why we can sue bash syntax here.

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#!/usr/bin/env bash

# Dark interface
# Force web UI dark mode
CHROMIUM_FLAGS="${CHROMIUM_FLAGS} --enable-features=WebUIDarkMode --force-dark-mode"

# Hardware acceleration
# Accelerated video decoding and GPU support
CHROMIUM_FLAGS="${CHROMIUM_FLAGS} --enable-accelerated-video-decode --enable-gpu"

# Reader mode
CHROMIUM_FLAGS="${CHROMIUM_FLAGS} --enable-reader-mode"

# Runtime cache
# Use the cache directory /run/user/1000/chrome/cache
CHROMIUM_FLAGS="${CHROMIUM_FLAGS} --disk-cache-dir=${XDG_RUNTIME_DIR}/chrome/cache"

# Window size
# Sawn a window of size 1200x900
CHROMIUM_FLAGS="${CHROMIUM_FLAGS} --window-size=1200,900"

Binary

If you use www-client/chromium-bin, then the config is located at /etc/chromium/default and CHROMIUM_FLAGS is CHROMIUM_BIN_FLAGS.

KDE Emacs

:: kde, emacs, tutorial, customization

By: Maciej Barć

Proper window size

Sometimes while the Emacs GUI window is tiled to a side or maximized small gaps may appear around the window. This "bug" can be worked around by:

  • right-click on the title bar,
  • "More Actions",
  • "Configure Special Window Settings…",
  • "Add Property",
  • "Obey Geometry Restrictions",
  • Select "Force" form the combo box,
  • Select "No" from the radio buttons.

Opening files from Dolphin in one Emacs instance

Emacs daemon can help with that. But before you run emacs --daemon, I need You to know that there might be a better way:

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(unless (or noninteractive (server-running-p))
  (server-start))

Adding the above to Your Emacs config will cause Emacs to start a daemon after it is opened (and no other Emacs servers are running), this also does not require --daemon flag.

After the daemon is started You can open files by right-clicking on them and selecting to open them in "Emacsclient".

Furthermore: You also utilize --iconic and add emacs --iconic to your Plasma startup. This is way better than using emacs --daemon because you can just click on your taskbar to open the minimized Emacs window. Also, Emacs will load all Your graphical libraries and configurations so Your theme will look properly and not as if Emacs was being used on the console.

Breeze theme

Sadly I have not found any theme that would look like Plasma. I use the spacemacs theme which looks a little bit similar, especially the background color comes close to Breeze's dark background color.

Note that the theme which You load with the function load-theme is a different thing that the GTK theme Emacs uses.

The GTK theme should be enabled if Your Emacs version is built with GTK support. On Gentoo this setting is controlled with the gtk USE flag. Also the flag toolkit-scroll-bars can be enabled for a look of scroll-bars consistent with the selected toolkit.

Xresources

There is a different approach to theming Your Emacs that loading a theme defined in ELisp - You can use a ~/.Xresource file.

If you do not load any theme in your configuration Emacs will by default read the .Xresources file, unless the --no-x-resources flag is used.

Here are a few Xresources config files that come close to the default Breeze theme:

Dbus integration

Emacs can be built with FreeDesktop's D-Bus support to communicate over the dbus protocol. This can come handy when using ERC as it has a setting to enable desktop notifications on mentions (erc-desktop-notifications.el).

The dbus interface can also be utilized to query desktop-oriented daemons, for example this library talks to the Bluetooth daemon.

KDE development

Those are some ELisp libraries that I found while browsing GitHub, they might be useful for somebody who delves into KDE app development.

Opening files in different applications

In addition to async-shell-command and start-process-shell-command I wrote this small library that may come handy.

Outside Emacs, inside Plasma

Sadly the KDE team did not add support to emulate Emacs-like keys in Plasma itself, but some applications like, for example Kate have configuration options to customize the key bindings. This is a repository explaining how to setup Kate's bindings.