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30 April 2013, 17:18

Open Build Service 2.4 understands Arch Linux packaging

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Almost a year after the last release of the Open Build Service (OBS), the openSUSE developers have announced version 2.4 of their software. The biggest new feature in the distributed packaging and build service is support for the PKGBUILD format from Arch Linux which becomes the third packaging format the service can now use – the other two being RPM and Debian's packaging system. Furthermore, OBS 2.4 introduces the 64-bit ARM AArch64 architecture as a target infrastructure and kernel, and bootloader packages can now be signed to work with UEFI Secure Boot.

The new version of the Open Build Service also implements a build constraints system, allowing users to specify requirements for build hosts when building their packages. Users can define a minimum kernel version, specific CPU flags, or the memory and disk sizes of the worker node executing the build job. The developers say that "with this constraint system it is not only possible to better match build jobs to build environments but it also can be used to run, for instance, package benchmarks always on the same worker or distinguish between secure and insecure build environments."

More information on the constraints feature is available in the OBS Reference Guide. The OBS developers say users should understand that the pool of available build nodes gets smaller the stricter the specified constraints are. This means that the build time of packages increases accordingly.

SUSE provides an instance of OBS that can be used free of charge in the form of the openSUSE Build Service, which is used not only by openSUSE developers to build packages for their distribution but also by developers from the Ubuntu community and other distributions. Like any other OBS installation, the openSUSE Build Service automatically distributes build jobs among its nodes and can be used to build packages for a number of different distributions, packaging formats and processor architectures. OBS 2.4 has been used since January on the openSUSE Build Service and has already built over 200,000 packages for its users.

Open Build Service 2.4 is available for download from the project's web site for openSUSE, SuSE Linux Enterprise, Red Hat Enterprise Linux, Fedora, Debian, Ubuntu and a number of other Linux distributions. More information on the new features in the release can be found in the Release Notes on GitHub. The Open Build Service software is licensed under the GPLv2.


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