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#1 2024-03-31 23:41:08

GlennW
Member
From: Brisbane, Australia
Registered: 2019-07-18
Posts: 601  

Nala, a new cli package manager replacement for dpkg and apt

Hi, I came across this information yesterday (Sunday 31st of March, here in Australia)

It's a command line package manager (install, remove, purge, update, upgrade)

which is capable of displaying more info (in colour on the command line) and do more if configured (/etc/nala/nala.conf)
and it is basically, a replacement for apt, apt-get and uses very similar commands.

It's in the Daedalus repo.

here is a generic copy of the story...(I can't remember where I saw it first, /. or "the register")

https://phoenixnap.com/kb/nala-apt

here is what the config looks like for your info...

/etc/nala/nala.conf

## Configuration file for Nala
[Nala]
# Set to false to disable scrolling text
scrolling_text = true

# Set to true for a more condensed transaction summary
simple_summary = false

# Set to false to disable auto auto-removing
auto_remove = true

# Set to false to disable auto updating the package list
# when running the upgrade command
auto_update = true

# Set to true Nala will list the upgradable packages automatically after `update`
#update_show_packages = false
update_show_packages = true

# Set to true and Nala will always assume yes
assume_yes = false

# Set to true for `MiB` false for `MB`
filesize_binary = false

# Set to true for `MegaBit` false for `MegaByte`
transfer_speed_bits = false

## Pre and Post install hooks allow you to run scripts or commands
## Before or After an install, upgrade and remove
[PreInstall]
## The `hook` key will run after every transaction
# hook = "/general/hook/pre-install.sh"

## You can use a package name to run a specific hook
## Only if that package has been altered
# nala = "apt show nala"

## Additionally you can use a wildcard*
# "linux-image-5*-amd64" = "/hook/for/pre-kernel.sh"

[PostInstall]
# hook = "/general/hook/post-install.sh"
# nala = "apt show nala"
# "linux-image-5*-amd64" = "/hook/for/post-kernel.sh"

## You can also setup Nala to pass arguments to your hook.
## It can be done inline style like so
# neofetch = { hook = "/home/username/neo-hook.sh", args = ["name", "version"] }

## You can also use the longer form
# [PostInstall.neofetch]
# hook = "/home/volitank/neo-hook.sh"

## Arguments are given to the hook in the order they exist in the array below
# args = [
# 	"name", # The name of the package. Arch is appended for non-native arches
# 	"fullname", # Full name of the package "neofetch:amd64"
# 	"architecture", # This will be the arch of the candidate version or "None"
#	"version", # This will be the version string of the candidate version or "None"

## To pick information from a specific version you can use the following syntax
# 	"candidate.version", # Version string of the candidate version or "None"
# 	"installed.version", # Version string of the installed version or "None"
# 	"installed.architecture", # Arch of the installed version or "None"
# ]

I love new stuff, and this looks good.


pic from 1993, new guitar day.

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#2 2024-04-01 10:37:05

Altoid
Member
Registered: 2017-05-07
Posts: 1,477  

Re: Nala, a new cli package manager replacement for dpkg and apt

Hello:

GlennW wrote:

... came across this information yesterday ...

Thanks for that. 8^)

But it seems (to me) that this application is looking for disadvantages to advantage, so to speak.
Not King's english but you get the idea.

When I see this type of thing I cannot but suspect.
Not sure exactly what ...

Maybe that's just me at this age.
As always, YMMV.

/rant on
Makes me think why these chaps don't take on a revamp of something useful (eg: WiCD) instead of wasting time/money/coder hours on this?
/rant off

phoenixnap.com wrote:

...
Parallel package downloads.
The ability to select the fastest mirrors.
Package transaction history.

I really cannot see the use for parallel package downloads - I like to keep an eye on the output of my terminal as each download comes in as well as the installation process. apt is very good for doing that.

As for the fastest mirrors, the deb.devuan.org round-robin already takes care of that.
The package transaction history gets stored stored (in plain text) in /var/log/apt/history.log and /var/log/apt/term.log.

That said, this aspect of its workings made me sort of uneasy: 

phoenixnap.com wrote:

Each time Nala conducts a new transaction, such as installing, removing, or updating a package, it registers it in the JSON file under a unique ID.

I like apt and how it works and if I need more data, there's always aptitude and/or synaptic.

GlennW wrote:

... love new stuff ...

So do I.

But my three* potato (hand held/manual) peelers still work perfectly well after ~25 years' use.
Don't need a new one.

Best,

A.

* Why three?
The last time I moved I misplaced the first and the third was a gift.

Last edited by Altoid (2024-04-01 10:42:47)

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#3 2024-04-01 13:38:11

manyroads
Member
From: 20 Jan 2021 ~ "Free at last"
Registered: 2020-08-18
Posts: 73  
Website

Re: Nala, a new cli package manager replacement for dpkg and apt

I have been using nala for well over a year on multiple distros.  It works quite well for me. The only issue I have really encountered is that there are a few missing apt functions... (can't remember which ones exactly).  But nala development seems of good quality and progress is regularly noticeable and pleasantly surprising.   

As for wanting to stick with old (sometimes ancient) things (an ever present feature of the Debian world), well no one is taking that option away anyone by trying something new/ else/ better.


Pax vobiscum,
Mark Rabideau - ManyRoads
i3wm, bspwm, dkwm, dwm, hlwm, sway, openbox on Sid/ ceres ~ Linux #449130
"For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong." -- H. L. Mencken

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#4 2024-04-01 17:27:38

aluma
Member
Registered: 2022-10-26
Posts: 585  

Re: Nala, a new cli package manager replacement for dpkg and apt

Regarding downloading 3 packages at once instead of one.

According to my observations, the download speed (approx. 2Mbit/sec  from
https://devuan.rosset.eu.org/devuan-files/  , for example   ) is limited by the server.

My Internet speed according to speedtest (fiber optic-router-WiFi) is 25...30 Mbit/sec. Therefore, whether there is one or three at once, there is no difference.

Synaptic and apt are quite satisfactory.
And TDE KPackage for variety sometimes.

Last edited by aluma (2024-04-01 17:34:42)

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#5 2024-04-01 21:16:18

Altoid
Member
Registered: 2017-05-07
Posts: 1,477  

Re: Nala, a new cli package manager replacement for dpkg and apt

Hello:

Synaptic and apt ...

Yes, that was my main point.

I don't think they are old or ancient.
My Ultra 24 WS is ca. 2007 and was considered ancient when I purchased it used/almost new in 2015 for ~US$300.
Still works perfectly well, just added RAM and upgraded the processor.

That said, there's also the well known Timeō Danaōs et dōna ferentēs phrase. (Virgil/Aeneid)

But like I wrote before: maybe it's just me at this age.

Best,

A.

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#6 2024-04-01 21:59:39

GlennW
Member
From: Brisbane, Australia
Registered: 2019-07-18
Posts: 601  

Re: Nala, a new cli package manager replacement for dpkg and apt

Nala doesn't do "reinstall"!


pic from 1993, new guitar day.

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#7 2024-04-02 11:18:40

stopAI
Member
Registered: 2023-04-04
Posts: 138  

Re: Nala, a new cli package manager replacement for dpkg and apt

Apt or Aptitude is much better than this nonsense called Nala...

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#8 2024-04-02 11:41:53

delgado
Member
Registered: 2022-07-14
Posts: 176  

Re: Nala, a new cli package manager replacement for dpkg and apt

And TDE KPackage for variety sometimes.

This thing is pure apt. Best GUI ever smile

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#9 2024-04-02 11:59:42

pcalvert
Member
Registered: 2017-05-15
Posts: 197  

Re: Nala, a new cli package manager replacement for dpkg and apt

There's a similar program that has been around for years. It's called wajig.

For more information, see:

https://wiki.debian.org/Wajig

Wajig: Linux System Management


Freespoke is a new search engine that respects user privacy and does not engage in censorship.
Another one is called Luxxle.

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#10 2024-04-02 15:36:49

Dutch_Master
Member
Registered: 2018-05-31
Posts: 279  

Re: Nala, a new cli package manager replacement for dpkg and apt

IMO this is a case of "Hurray, we have a solution!, Now we try finding a problem to solve with it!" roll

Apt, dpkg, Synaptic and aptitude are (still) great tools to work with. Nala has no real technical reason to exist, other then eye-candy for a particular kind of user and an itch scratched for the dev(s).

Just me tuppence smile

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#11 2024-04-02 15:49:21

stopAI
Member
Registered: 2023-04-04
Posts: 138  

Re: Nala, a new cli package manager replacement for dpkg and apt

There's a similar program that has been around for years

Thank you for the info smile

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#12 2024-04-02 17:06:27

Altoid
Member
Registered: 2017-05-07
Posts: 1,477  

Re: Nala, a new cli package manager replacement for dpkg and apt

Hello:

Dutch_Master wrote:

... no real technical reason to exist ...

Quite so.
But it does.

And some money/time (no idea how much it could be) has been invested in producing it.

As per my rant, there are hundreds other more useful abandoned projects in need of maintenance to adopt and help out with in Linux.
Why Nala? Yet another solution looking for a problem?

Maybe because ... ... it registers it in the JSON file under a unique ID.?
Nah!   8^°

Best,

A.

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#13 2024-04-02 23:24:38

GlennW
Member
From: Brisbane, Australia
Registered: 2019-07-18
Posts: 601  

Re: Nala, a new cli package manager replacement for dpkg and apt

Hi, There are many more package managers available than I knew about.

BTW, I read it in a Linux Magazine April 2024. Maybe they were filling space.


pic from 1993, new guitar day.

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#14 2024-04-03 09:32:05

aluma
Member
Registered: 2022-10-26
Posts: 585  

Re: Nala, a new cli package manager replacement for dpkg and apt

Not a package manager, but sometimes useful.
The mc file manager can install the package and view its contents.

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#15 2024-04-05 18:20:04

mweishaar
Member
Registered: 2018-11-11
Posts: 36  

Re: Nala, a new cli package manager replacement for dpkg and apt

Apt does what I need it to do for me, I have a fast connection and install updates every couple of days. I have a cronjob that runs 'apt update' and then 'apt-get -s upgrade' so I get an email of what is available.  (you can also run 'apt list --upgradable', just diff looking output)

But it would be kind of nice to have apt show some color in the output, configurable of course. Perhaps using LS_COLORS like ls does somehow? It would make the output a little more lively.

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#16 2024-04-18 17:03:35

mweishaar
Member
Registered: 2018-11-11
Posts: 36  

Re: Nala, a new cli package manager replacement for dpkg and apt

Replying to my own message, but saw this on the Reg today  smile
https://www.theregister.com/2024/04/18/apt_3_debian/

"Major updates to Debian's Advanced Packaging Tool don't come along very often, but APT 2.9 is here with a significant facelift.
APT version 2.9 has just been accepted into Debian's unstable development channel. This is an unfinished development version, which should lead to APT 3 in time for Debian 13, which will probably appear around mid-2025."
...
"Most notably, the new version uses colored output. Packages to be installed or upgraded are listed in green by default, and ones to be removed are listed in red. This will make the distinction clearer for those of us with working color vision, but it's not the best choice for those who suffer from daltonism, or red/green color blindness – the most common form, affecting some 8 or 9 percent of men."

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#17 2024-04-18 18:14:02

boughtonp
Member
From: UK
Registered: 2023-01-19
Posts: 212  
Website

Re: Nala, a new cli package manager replacement for dpkg and apt

Um... anyone who has trouble seeing red and/or green will probably already have reconfigured their terminal colours accordingly, so they can adequately see/discern those colours in everything that isn't Apt, no?

If they haven't, or if they need Apt to be different, they can set APT::Color::Red and/or APT::Color::Green as appropriate.

Not only that, but this change has only just entered Unstable - which is where such things are tested and changed if needed, long before making it to an actual release, so if this change is detrimental then something can be done about it.

Maybe it's just me, but I feel a real journalist should have bothered to do the small amount of research it took to confirm the configurability? Maybe they simply had a minimum word count to reach and couldn't be arsed...


3.1415P265E589T932E846R64338

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#18 2024-04-18 22:32:41

GlennW
Member
From: Brisbane, Australia
Registered: 2019-07-18
Posts: 601  

Re: Nala, a new cli package manager replacement for dpkg and apt

It's sad that journalist's (feel they )have to work this way now-a-days.

It's so cheap and easy to spread mis-information by just copying words to sell add space.
It's like cheating on an exam, whatever you get wrong on the test, they can blame someone else, but still want to be paid for the copy.

Any way, I like the colours.

Nala update shows "no change" in green, "updated" in blue and "errors" in red in a tidy format.

Saves scanning all the text for important warnings.

I saw that "apt" post in the Reg as well.


pic from 1993, new guitar day.

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