Adopting a package

Out of 5,168 package descriptions, 550 (11%) are currently unmaintained. Adopting an unmaintained package is a good way to start working on Fink: you don’t need to start from scratch and you help keeping packages up-to-date.

The following command lists all unmaintained packages:

fink list --maintainer=None

Alternatively, you may visit this query at Fink’s Package Database.

If you feel like adopting an unmaintained package, the first step is to copy the package description (and patch if one exists) to your local tree, /sw/fink/dists/local/main/finkinfo. Package descriptions and patches are located under /sw/fink/dists. If you run

fink dumpinfo -finfofile packagename

then Fink will show you the location of the .info file that defines that package. Another possibility is to look for file names that resemble the package name, such as

find -L /sw/fink/dists -name \*tetex\*.info

Check if there’s a package.patch file under the same directory as; if it exists, copy it to your local tree too. Apply the appropriate modifications (e.g. fields maintainer, version, revision) and build it in maintainer mode:

fink -m --build-as-nobody rebuild package

After having built a valid package, submit it (package description and patch) to Fink’s Package Submissions tracker at (you’ll need a account for that). The tracker is periodically checked and Fink committers review and apply submitted packages to Fink’s distribution. Please subscribe to the fink-devel mailing list as it is the official channel used by the Fink Core Group to send announcements to maintainers.

The authoritative packaging document is the Packaging Manual. There’s also a Packaging Tutorial available. If you need help with packaging, send an e-mail to the fink-devel mailing list or drop by the #fink IRC channel on

Happy Finking!


2 responses to “Adopting a package

  1. This link also brings up orphaned packages (found on the PDB main page) :

  2. Thanks, Hanspeter. I’ve edited the post accordingly.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s