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Manual Reference Pages  -  PKG-REPOSITORY (5)


package repository - format and operation of package repositories used by pkg(8).


Filesystem Organization
Repository Access Methods
Repository Mirroring
Working With Multiple Repositories
See Also


Package repositories used by the pkg(8) program consist of one or more collections of "package tarballs" together with package catalogues and optionally various other collected package metadata.

Each collection consists of packages suitable for installation on a specific system ABI: a combination of operating system, CPU architecture, OS version, word size, and for certain processors endianness or similar attributes.

The package collections are typically made available to users for download via a web or FTP server although various other means of access may be employed. Encoding the ABI value into the repository URL allows pkg to automatically select the correct package collection by expanding the special token ${ABI} in pkg.conf.

Repositories may be mirrored over several sites: pkg has built-in support for discovering available mirrors dynamically given a common URL by several mechanisms.


Only very minimal constraints on repository layout are prescribed by pkg. The following constraints are all that must be met:
  • A repository may contain several package collections with parallel REPOSITORY_ROOTs in order to support diverse system ABIs.
  • All of the content for one ABI should be accessible in a filesystem or URL hierarchy beneath the REPOSITORY_ROOT.
  • All packages available beneath one REPOSITORY_ROOT should be binary compatible with a specific system ABI.
  • The repository catalogue is located at the apex of the repository, at a specific location relative to the REPOSITORY_ROOT.

Package catalogues contain the paths relative to the REPOSITORY_ROOT for each package, allowing the full URL for downloading the package to be constructed.

Where a package may be applicable to more than one ABI (e.g., it contains only text files) symbolic or hard links, URL mappings or other techniques may be utilised to avoid duplication of storage.

Although no specific filesystem organization is required, the usual convention (inherited from pkg-install(8)) is to create a filesystem hierarchy thus:
  One directory that contains every package available from the repository for that ABI. Packages are stored as package tarballs identified by name and version. This directory may contain several different versions of each package accumulated over time, but the repository catalogue will only record the latest version for each distinct package name.
  May contains symbolic links to the latest versions of packages in the All directory. Symbolic links contain a 'latest link' style name only, without version. As the whole 'latest link' concept is rendered obsolete by pkg, this will usually contain only the pkg.txz link, used for bootstrapping pkg itself on a new system.
  Contains one JSON document, which is the concatenation of the +MANIFEST files from each of the packages in the repository. This is used by pkg-1.1 or later.
  (Deprecated). Contains the package manifest data as above, but pre-loaded into an SQLite database. This is supplied for backwards compatibility with pkg-1.0.
  (Optional). Contains a YAML document listing all of the files contained in all of the packages within the repository.

The repository may optionally contain sub-directories corresponding to the package origins within the ports tree.

Each of the packages listed in the repository catalogue must have a unique name. There are no other constraints: package sets are not required to be either complete (i.e., with all dependencies satisfied) or self-consistent within a single repository.


pkg uses standard network protocols for repository access. Any URL scheme understood by the fetch(3) library may be used ( HTTP, HTTPS, FTP or FILE) as well as remote access over SSH. See fetch(3) for a description of additional environment variables, including FETCH_BIND_ADDRESS, FTP_LOGIN, FTP_PASSIVE_MODE, FTP_PASSWORD, FTP_PROXY, ftp_proxy, HTTP_AUTH, HTTP_PROXY, http_proxy, HTTP_PROXY_AUTH, HTTP_REFERER, HTTP_USER_AGENT, NETRC, NO_PROXY and no_proxy.


Multiple copies of a repository can be provided for resilience or to scale up site capacity. Two schemes are provided to auto-discover sets of mirrors given a single repository URL.
HTTP The repository URL should download a text document containing a sequence of lines beginning with 'URL:' followed by any amount of white space and one URL for a repository mirror. Any lines not matching this pattern are ignored. Mirrors are tried in the order listed until a download succeeds.
SRV For an SRV mirrored repository where the URL is specified as SRV records should be set up in the DNS:
_http._tcp.pkgrepo IN SRV 10 1 80 mirror0
                   IN SRV 20 1 80 mirror1

where the SRV priority and weight parameters are used to control search order and traffic weighting between sites, and the port number and hostname are used to construct the individual mirror URLs.

Mirrored repositories are assumed to have identical content, and only one copy of the repository catalogue will be downloaded to apply to all mirror sites.


Where several different repositories are configured pkg will search amongst them all in the order specified by the PRIORITY settings in the repo.conf files, unless directed to use a single repository by the -r flag to pkg-fetch(8), pkg-install(8), pkg-upgrade(8), pkg-search(8) or pkg-rquery(8).

Where several different versions of the same package are available, pkg will select the one with the highest version to install or to upgrade an installed package to, even if a lower numbered version can be found in a repository earlier in the list. This applies even if an explicit version is stated on the command line. Thus if packages example-1.0.0 and example-1.0.1 are available in configured repositories, then

pkg install example-1.0.0

will actually result in example-1.0.1 being installed. To override this behaviour, on first installation of the package select the repository with the appropriate version:

pkg install -r repo-a example-1.0.0

and then to make updates to that package "sticky" to the same repository, set the value CONSERVATIVE_UPGRADE to true in pkg.conf.


fetch(3), pkg_printf(3), pkg_repos(3), pkg.conf(5), pkg(8), pkg-add(8), pkg-annotate(8), pkg-audit(8), pkg-autoremove(8), pkg-backup(8), pkg-check(8), pkg-clean(8), pkg-config(8), pkg-convert(8), pkg-create(8), pkg-delete(8), pkg-fetch(8), pkg-info(8), pkg-install(8), pkg-lock(8), pkg-query(8), pkg-register(8), pkg-repo(8), pkg-rquery(8), pkg-search(8), pkg-set(8), pkg-shell(8), pkg-shlib(8), pkg-ssh(8), pkg-stats(8), pkg-update(8), pkg-updating(8), pkg-upgrade(8), pkg-version(8), pkg-which(8)
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