Development is done using the Git distributed version control system.
Thus, access to the repository is not strictly necessary. We welcome
contributions in the form of patches as produced by
format-patch sent to the mailing list.
Please write commit logs in the ChangeLog format (see Change Logs in GNU Coding Standards); you can check the commit history for
Before submitting a patch that adds or modifies a package definition, please run through this check list:
guix lint package, where package is the name of the new or modified package, and fix any errors it reports (see Invoking guix lint).
guix build package.
Sometimes, packages include copies of the source code of their dependencies as a convenience for users. However, as a distribution, we want to make sure that such packages end up using the copy we already have in the distribution, if there is one. This improves resource usage (the dependency is built and stored only once), and allows the distribution to make transverse changes such as applying security updates for a given software package in a single place and have them affect the whole system—something that bundled copies prevent.
guix size(see Invoking guix size). This will allow you to notice references to other packages unwillingly retained. It may also help determine whether to split the package (see Packages with Multiple Outputs), and which optional dependencies should be used.
guix refresh --list-dependent packagewill help you do that (see Invoking guix refresh).
Packages with roughly 100 dependents or more usually have to be
committed to a separate branch. That branch can then be built
separately by our build farm, and later merged into
everything has been successfully built. This allows us to fix issues
before they hit users, and to reduce the window during which pre-built
binaries are not available.
A simple way to do that is by building the same package several times in a row on your machine (see Invoking guix build):
guix build --rounds=2 my-package
This is enough to catch a class of common non-determinism issues, such as timestamps or randomly-generated output in the build result.
Another option is to use
guix challenge (see Invoking guix challenge). You may run it once the package has been committed and
hydra.gnu.org to check whether it obtains the same
result as you did. Better yet: Find another machine that can build it
guix publish. Since the remote build machine is
likely different from yours, this can catch non-determinism issues
related to the hardware—e.g., use of different instruction set
extensions—or to the operating system kernel—e.g., reliance on
uname or /proc files.
Examples of unrelated changes include the addition of several packages, or a package update along with fixes to that package.
When posting a patch to the mailing list, use ‘[PATCH] …’ as
a subject. You may use your email client or the
send-email command. We prefer to get patches in plain text messages,
either inline or as MIME attachments. You are advised to pay attention if
your email client changes anything like line breaks or indentation which
could potentially break the patches.