0014 Merge Package Repos

Merge package repositories


Merge the pacman repository [community] into [extra] as well as the packaging VCS location community into packages.

The [core] repository remains limited to Developers.

New Package Maintainers will be restricted to publish packages solely to [testing] for the first two months of their active packaging actions.


In early days, the Trusted User packagers were meant to be a completely decoupled group from Arch Linux and hence got a dedicated optional pacman repository and VCS. Over the time, the distinction of packages between [community] and [extra] became blurry and at the latest since the official re-integration and rename of the Trusted Users into the Arch Linux organization the barrier became moot and essentially just obstructive.

Merging [community] and [extra] will greatly expand the packager coverage and reduce the common need to move [extra] packages to [community] just to allow Package Maintainers that have no Developer permissions to maintain ordinary packages.

Nevertheless as [extra] will contain a lot of system critical packages like widely used libraries and desktop environments we intend to shield them from accidents of new Package Maintainers.

Furthermore the unification of the VCS source locations greatly reduces the complexity and will dramatically simplify the Git migration. Without the merge a lot of Git packaging workflow issues and inconveniences arise like cross repo history moves as well as invalid local clones afterwards. Once we have one namespace for packaging sources, we would likely be able to propose a final Git migration implementation shortly.

As a cherry on top, this structure will easily allow us to have Junior Developers.


Use a dedicated set of repositories for [core] that has access control for package release and db-move limited to Developers:

  • core
  • core-testing
  • core-staging

Merge the [community] repository into [extra] including the testing and staging repositories with access limited to Developers and Package Maintainers:

  • extra
  • testing
  • staging
  • multilib
  • multilib-testing
  • multilib-staging

New Package Maintainers will be restricted to publish packages solely to [testing] for the first two months of their active packaging actions. Their sponsors are expected to be the primary persons responsible for carefully reviewing changes before moving them out of [testing].

Unify the VCS location into a single primary Git group namespace. This will allow us to have all individual package PKGBUILD repositories in a single location with a convenient and simpler workflow:


  • Trusted Users will be able to commit to PKGBUILDs related to [core] packages. However this shouldn't be an issue if we still have access control in front of the [core] package releasing process. The package release is the important part that should be shielded and Trusted Users are no external group anymore.

Unresolved Questions


Alternatives Considered

  • Arch could do nothing instead, but that will preserve all the problems like the artificial difference between [extra] and [community], the reduced exposure of [extra] to all packagers as well as complicate the Git migration and heavily inconvenience its resulting packaging workflows.
  • If the VCS location merge is done before migrating to Git, we either heavily complicate the svn2git conversion or lose history. Therefore it is recommended to only go for the VCS location merge while migrating to Git.