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> The KXStudio repositories are (slowly) coming back
On 2019-09-24 by falkTX

Greetings from Portugal.
After some time setting up in a new country, thinking and planning, I (falkTX) decided a few things in regards to the KXStudio project.

First of all, if you have not noticed, the KXStudio ISO images were taken down.
They were using Ubuntu 14.04 as base, that while still works in many cases, starts to show its age.
The fact that I can no longer run it myself (due to a new GPU that is unsupported in its older OS stack) forced me to finally move to something new.

Wherever new ISOs will come back again is undecided at this point.
They are not a priority at all right now, so if I get to make them again it is not going to be this year or the beginning of the next.
I still like KDE/Plasma the best in terms of desktop experience, so that would remain.
Plasma and KDE ecosystem is changing too fast, it does not make it easy for what I want in KXStudio.
Perhaps when Qt6 is out, KDE/Plasma5 will slow down a bit, we'll see...

Anyway, the bigger news is that the KXStudio repositories are coming back!
(for those that do not know, KXStudio has repositories that sit on top of any Debian or Ubuntu system and provides updates and new packages related to audio/music production)

To be honest, they are already back right now :), but not in a state that matches what they used to be before.
I am in the process of bringing over all the relevant packages slowly. A few packages per day so in a few weeks we should be good again. :)

Anyway, a new repository setup was really needed.
Previously, the repositories were mixing packages built in 3 different Ubuntu versions and there was a separate gcc5 variant of the repos with a few packages that use the new libstdc++ ABI introduced in gcc5.1.
This was a pain to manage, so better to rethink it.
I kept things somewhat updated over the years, and did not change/break the repositories in a meaningful way because 14.04 was still supported and what I used daily anyway.
Now that enough time has passed and 14.04 is officially EOL, perfect chance to rework the repositories for the future!

Here is the current situation:

  • The new repositories require at least Ubuntu 18.04 or Debian 10 (or equivalent)
  • There is a single deb file to be installed in order to activate the repositories.

    (hopefully no more libstdc++ ABI breakages again, please...?)
  • The old repositories are considered legacy and will no longer be updated.

    Packages included on them will still remain available for some time.
  • You will not be automatically updated to the new repositories, it has to be done manually

    This is to prevent breakage of existing systems, mostly for keeping "old" packages installable.
    Once you update to the new repositories, you will not be able to "apt-get install" packages that were present in the old repositories but are not yet in the new ones.
    This is intentional. There are quite a few packages that I will not be supporting anymore, and thus won't end up in the repos.
    When you move to the new repos, you will be able to remove the KXStudio specific version of packages and then install whatever version someone else provides.
    I will not be uploading packages to the new repositories that I do not intend to keep updated.
  • armhf and arm64 are now supported targets, taking Raspberry Pi 3 as the minimum specs

    With this, the repos will support 32 and 64bit Intel-based architecture, plus 32 and 64bit ARM.
  • Audio plugins (including standalone synths and FX) are the focus of the repos.

    General applications and tools will not be supported anymore.
    This is mainly to reduce the burden of maintaining the repos, as applications often have very complex dependencies compared to plugins (some are actually quite difficult to build).
    I will be packaging a few that I personally use, or that have stalled in feature development.
  • All available application and plugin packages are listed here and here respectively.

    There are direct deb files to download from those pages, for those that want something specific in the repos but do not want to enable the full thing.
    These 2 pages are automatically generated, and fetch their contents directly from the repositories.
  • There is a page dedicated to questions about the repositories here.

    I will be updating this page as more questions appear.

Speaking of updates, the website needs some touches here and there...
Already started with a few, like removing the home carousel and all use of JavaScript, plus updating the pages related to the repositories obviously. :)
It is a moving target as pretty much all websites, so don't be surprised to see changes, though they won't be that substantial..

That is all for now, thank you.

PS: You might be wondering why I am writing this text in first person, contrary to other past posts.
This is mainly because, well, KXStudio was and still is a one-person project (with the occasional help here and there for small things).
I am making an effort to not write "marketing speech"-like anymore, just that.