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1 <?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
2 <!DOCTYPE guide SYSTEM "/dtd/guide.dtd">
4 <guide link="/proj/en/overlays/userguide.xml">
5 <title>Gentoo Overlays: Users' Guide</title>
7 <author title="Author">
8 <mail link="stuart">Stuart Herbert</mail>
9 </author>
11 <author title="Author">
12 <mail link="jokey">Markus Ullmann</mail>
13 </author>
15 <abstract>This guide helps users understand how to use the Gentoo Overlays service</abstract>
17 <license/>
19 <version>1.1</version>
20 <date>2008-10-30</date>
22 <chapter>
23 <title>Introduction</title>
24 <section>
25 <title>Audience</title>
26 <body>
27 <p>This document has been written for all users of Gentoo. If you are a Gentoo
28 developer or Gentoo staff member, and you want to be able to manage your own
29 overlay, please see the <uri link="/proj/en/overlays/devguide.xml">Developers' Guide</uri>.</p>
30 </body>
31 </section>
33 <section>
34 <title>What Are Overlays?</title>
35 <body>
36 <p>"Overlays" are package trees for Portage. They contain additional ebuilds for Gentoo. They are maintained by Gentoo developers and projects but distributed separately from the main Portage tree.</p>
37 </body>
38 </section>
40 <section>
41 <title>Why Use Overlays?</title>
42 <body>
43 <p>People create overlays for all sorts of reasons. Here are a few of the main
44 ones:</p>
45 <ul>
46 <li>If you modify an ebuild in /usr/portage, your change will be lost the next time you emerge --sync. But, if you put your modified ebuild into an overlay, your change is safe from emerge --sync.</li>
47 <li>Because overlays are not the main Gentoo Portage package tree, they're a great place to develop and test an ebuild without fear of breaking the main Gentoo Portage package tree.</li>
48 <li>Not every ebuild belongs in the Gentoo Portage package tree. An overlay is a great place to store an ebuild until it is ready to go into the Gentoo Portage package tree.</li>
49 </ul>
50 </body>
51 </section>
53 <section>
54 <title>What is the Gentoo Overlays Project?</title>
55 <body>
56 <p>Gentoo Overlays provide social workspaces to allow Gentoo projects,
57 developers and users to collaborate together on tomorrow's Gentoo packages.
58 We do this by hosting overlays for Gentoo projects and developers.</p>
59 </body>
60 </section>
62 <section>
63 <title>Are All Official Overlays Hosted On overlays.gentoo.org?</title>
64 <body>
65 <p>No. Gentoo developers are free to put their overlay wherever suits them best; they don't have to use overlays.gentoo.org if they don't want to.</p>
66 </body>
67 </section>
68 </chapter>
70 <chapter>
71 <title>Getting Started With Overlays</title>
72 <section>
73 <body>
74 <p>Use Gunnar Wrobel's layman to easily install and update overlays over
75 time.</p>
76 </body>
77 </section>
79 <section>
80 <title>Installing Layman</title>
81 <body>
82 <p>To install layman, follow these steps:</p>
83 <pre caption="Installing layman">
84 <i>emerge layman</i>
85 <i>echo "source /usr/local/portage/layman/make.conf" >> /etc/make.conf</i>
86 </pre>
87 <note>
88 Layman will create "/usr/local/portage/layman/make.conf" once you add
89 your first overlay. But if you do not plan to install an overlay
90 immediately you should ensure that this file actually exists and
91 contains the empty variable "PORTDIR_OVERLAY". Otherwise portage will
92 complain. You can run "echo PORTDIR_OVERLAY=\"\" >
93 /usr/portage/local/layman/make.conf" in order to have the file created
94 correctly.
95 </note>
96 </body>
97 </section>
99 <section>
100 <title>Listing The Available Overlays</title>
101 <body>
102 <p>To see the list of overlays available, run:</p>
103 <pre caption="Listing the available overlays">layman -L</pre>
104 </body>
105 </section>
107 <section>
108 <title>Installing An Overlay</title>
109 <body>
110 <p>To install an overlay on your computer, run:</p>
111 <pre caption="Adding an overlay">
112 layman -a &lt;overlay-name&gt;
113 </pre>
114 <p>For example, to install <uri link="http://overlays.gentoo.org/proj/php">the PHP overlay</uri>, run:</p>
115 <pre caption="Adding the PHP overlay">
116 layman -a php
117 </pre>
118 </body>
119 </section>
121 <section>
122 <title>Installing Packages From An Overlay</title>
123 <body>
124 <p>After installing an overlay, you can install packages from it by running:</p>
125 <pre caption="Installing A Package From An Overlay">
126 emerge -av &lt;category&gt;/&lt;package&gt;
127 </pre>
128 <p>Portage automatically searches your main Portage tree (in /usr/portage), and
129 all of the overlays that you've installed, and picks the latest version of the
130 package that it can find.</p>
132 <p>If Portage isn't picking up the package from the overlay, that's normally
133 because the package is marked ~arch, where "arch" is the architecture of your
134 computer (normally x86).</p>
135 </body>
136 </section>
138 <section>
139 <title>Updating An Overlay</title>
140 <body>
141 <p>To keep your installed overlays up to date, run:</p>
142 <pre caption="Updating All Installed Overlays">
143 layman -S
144 </pre>
145 <p>Please don't run this more than once a day, or you'll put too much strain on
146 Gentoo's infrastructure.</p>
147 </body>
148 </section>
149 </chapter>
151 <chapter>
152 <title>How To Get More Involved</title>
154 <section>
155 <title>Introduction</title>
156 <body>
157 <p>All Gentoo developers were users of Gentoo before they became developers and still are users. Our users aren't just the reason Gentoo exists today; they're our future volunteers too.</p>
159 <p>If you start contributing to a project, we'll give you write access to the
160 project's overlay, and we'll provide mentors to help you contribute.
161 Eventually, if we like what you do and the way you do it, we'll invite you to
162 go the whole hog and become a full Gentoo developer.</p>
163 </body>
164 </section>
166 <section>
167 <title>How To Get Started</title>
168 <body>
169 <p>If you want to contribute to an overlay, the best approach is to build a good
170 working relationship with the Gentoo developers who are responsible for the
171 overlay. You can find out who is responsible for each overlay by going to
172 <uri link="http://overlays.gentoo.org">overlays.gentoo.org's homepage</uri>, and clicking on the link for the overlay in question.</p>
174 <p>Different developers preferred to be contacted in different ways. Some hang
175 out on IRC, and may have their own channels for their projects. Examples of
176 these include the PHP project (#gentoo-php), and the Webapps project
177 (#gentoo-web). Others prefer to be contacted by email only. The only way
178 you'll find out is to try and make contact, and take it from there. Commonly people in #gentoo-bugs on freenode IRC know where to find the people in question.</p>
179 </body>
180 </section>
182 <section>
183 <title>Working With Subversion</title>
184 <body>
185 <p>Subversion is one version control software we use to manage the contents of our overlays. If you have never used Subversion before, the Subversion book is an excellent way to learn Subversion. You can buy it in dead-tree format if you prefer or read it online for free.
186 </p>
187 </body>
188 </section>
190 <section>
191 <title>Working With Git</title>
192 <body>
193 <p>Git is another version control software we use to manage the contents of our overlays. To get in touch with it, see the tutorial provided on the homepage.</p>
194 </body>
195 </section>
197 <section>
198 <title>Further Information</title>
199 <body>
200 <p>The Gentoo project (or developer) you're working with should be able to
201 provide you with any further help and assistance that you need.</p>
202 </body>
203 </section>
204 </chapter>
206 <chapter>
207 <title>Frequently Asked Questions</title>
208 <section>
209 <body>
210 <p>Q: Do you host overlays for users?</p>
211 <ul>
212 <li>A: No, we do not. If you want an overlay of your own on (git.)overlays.gentoo.org, you must first become a Gentoo developer.</li>
213 </ul>
214 </body>
215 </section>
216 </chapter>
217 </guide>

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