Arch Linux has a community-driven repository that includes software not available in the standard repositories found with the likes of Fedora and Ubuntu-based distributions. AUR stands for Arch User Repository, and it’s extra fancy because what it does is use the source for a piece of software and then, with the help of the distribution’s package manager, installs it.
You can see this as a sort of best-of-both-worlds scenario, and it’s one you won’t find with non-Arch distributions—unless you make use of a brand-new tool called LURE, or Linux User REpository. Although LURE doesn’t give you access to the AUR repositories, what it does is strive to bring an AUR-like feature to non-Arch distributions.
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What is LURE?
From the developer of LURE:
“My project is called LURE, short for Linux User REpository. It builds native packages and then installs them using the system package manager, just like the AUR. It uses a build script similar to the AUR’s PKGBUILD to build the packages. It is written in pure Go, which means that it has zero dependencies after it’s built, other than any privilege escalation command (sudo, doas, etc.) and any one of the supported package managers, which currently are: pacman, apt, apk (Alpine Linux, not Android), dnf, yum and zypper.”
Before we continue, know that LURE is very much in early development, and the official LURE repository is limited in the software it offers. If this tool really takes off, I would expect that repository to start filling up with all kinds of software quickly. What that will require is for developers of open-source packages to submit their software to the LURE repositories. That’s part of the beauty of open-source projects: They are often a community affair, so anyone who wants to get involved can.
LURE also makes it possible to add multiple repositories, so it has the promise of being even more flexible than AUR. Hopefully, more repositories will be added soon. But, even though this is a project that is just getting started, it’s most certainly worth a look. Let me show you how to install and use LURE.
What you’ll need to install LURE
- A running instance of either an Ubuntu or Fedora-based Linux distribution
- A user with sudo privileges.
How to install LURE
The installation of LURE is remarkably simple. First, open a web browser, navigate to the LURE download page and download either the .deb or .rpm package suitable for your architecture. Save that file to your ~/Downloads directory.
After the file has completed downloading, open a terminal window, and install the software with one of the commands below:
- For Ubuntu-based distributions: sudo dpkg -i ~/Downloads/lure*.deb
- For Fedora-based distributions: sudo rpm -i ~/Downloads/lure*.rpm
Once the installation is complete, you’re ready to start using LURE.
How to use LURE
Let me demonstrate LURE by installing the Neofetch application. Neofetch is a pretty cool app that displays all sorts of information about your operating system from the command line. Let’s first install Neofetch using LURE.
Go back to the terminal window, and issue the command:
sudo lure in neofetch
The above command is the same, regardless of which distribution you’re using. LURE will begin the process and ask for your okay to continue with the installation. Once the installation completes, you can then run Neofetch with the command:
Everything should go off without a hitch.
If you want to delete Neofetch, the command would be:
sudo lure rm neofetch
To upgrade Neofetch, issue the command:
sudo lure up neofetch
To find out what software is available for installation, issue the command:
sudo lure ls
As I said, LURE is very much in early development, which is why you won’t yet find many applications available for installation. Hopefully, that will change as LURE becomes more popular and is seen as a viable alternative for non-Arch Linux distributions. Even if that takes some time, this is a great open-source project to get involved with.
If you are interested in hopping on board the LURE project, reach out to the developer, Arsen Musayelyan, and find out how you can contribute.
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