Emacs as a general-purpose package manager

GNU Guix, the package manager written for the GNU system, now has a neat Emacs user interface! It offers a visual, user-friendly alternative to the guix package command-line interface.

For those familiar with package.el, the main user interface is quite similar: commands like guix-newest-available-packages, guix-search-by-regexp, and guix-installed-packages present a browsable list of packages. Individual packages can be selected, which displays additional details and presents a button to install or delete them. It is also possible to mark a set of packages for installation, upgrade, or deletion, and execute the set of operations in a single transaction.

The interface has been developed by Alex Kost and was merged in Guix a day ago. It uses Geiser, the beloved Guile/Emacs interface and development environment, to communicate with the underlying Guile process. That Guile process, in turn, simply uses Guix and the whole distribution as libraries—the goodness of embedding the packaging DSL in a general-purpose language.

Try it out and let us know what you think!

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User interfaces