Package management seems to quickly become a thing of the past as developers and distributions increasingly accept bundling and binary imaging as a solution to the problems caused by traditional packaging and deployment efforts. We claim that the level of packages is still the most appropriate level of abstraction and demonstrate how functional package management fixes the defects of traditional package management. We introduce GNU Guix as an implementation of a functional package manager and showcase features that are especially useful for developing software and for maintaining heterogeneous software environments.
The effects of expressing packages in a DSL embedded in the general purpose language GNU Guile (one of the key differences to Nix) will be demonstrated by interacting with packages on the REPL and showing tools that use Guix as a Scheme library.
Ricardo is a free software hacker and GNU/Linux system administrator. He’s currently working to support the high performance computing platform at the Max-Delbrueck-Centrum where he develops and packages scientific software using the functional package manager GNU Guix. As a core contributor and co-maintainer of GNU Guix he has extensive experience in making stubborn software work.