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doc: Update `README'.

* README: Update introductory summary.  Point to Savannah instead of
  Gitorious.  Mention <bug-guix@gnu.org>.
  (Guix & Nix): New section.
gn-latest-20200428
Ludovic Courtès 9 years ago
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-*- mode: org -*-
GNU Guix is Nix[0] from Guile[1]!
[[http://www.gnu.org/software/guix/][GNU Guix]] is a purely functional package manager, and associated free
software distribution, for the [[http://www.gnu.org/gnu/gnu.html][GNU system]]. In addition to standard
package management features, Guix supports transactional upgrades and
roll-backs, unprivileged package management, per-user profiles, and
garbage collection.
Concretely, it allows Nix package management to be done entirely in
Scheme. The goal is to investigate whether Scheme, and in particular
the ability to define EDSLs, would allow it to fulfill the role of the
Nix language.
It provides [[http://www.gnu.org/software/guile/][Guile]] Scheme APIs, including a high-level embedded
domain-specific languages (EDSLs) to describe how packages are to be
built and composed.
[0] http://nixos.org/nix/
[1] http://gnu.org/software/guile/
A user-land free software distribution for GNU/Linux comes as part of
Guix.
Guix is based on the [[http://nixos.org/nix/][Nix]] package manager.
* Hacking
Guix currently depends on the following packages:
GNU Guix currently depends on the following packages:
- [[http://gnu.org/software/guile/][GNU Guile 2.0.x]]
- [[http://nixos.org/nix/][Nix]]
@ -52,10 +57,45 @@ the (guix store) module.
* Contact
The repository is at <https://gitorious.org/guix/>.
Please email <ludo@gnu.org> or <nix-dev@lists.science.uu.nl>, or
join #guile or #nixos on irc.freenode.net or `civodul'.
GNU Guix is hosted at https://savannah.gnu.org/projects/guix/.
Please email <bug-guix@gnu.org> for bug reports or questions regarding
Guix and its distribution; email <gnu-system-discuss@gnu.org> for
general issues regarding the GNU system.
Join #guix on irc.freenode.net.
* Guix & Nix
GNU Guix is based on [[http://nixos.org/nix/][the Nix package manager]]. It implements the same
package deployment paradigm, and in fact it reuses some of its code.
Yet, different engineering decisions were made for Guix, as described
below.
Nix is really two things: a package build tool, implemented by a library
and daemon, and a special-purpose programming language. GNU Guix relies
on the former, but uses Scheme as a replacement for the latter.
Using Scheme instead of a specific language allows us to get all the
features and tooling that come with Guile (compiler, debugger, REPL,
Unicode, libraries, etc.) And it means that we have a general-purpose
language, on top of which we can have embedded domain-specific languages
(EDSLs), such as the one used to define packages. This broadens what
can be done in package recipes themselves, and what can be done around them.
Technically, Guix makes remote procedure calls to the ‘nix-worker’
daemon to perform operations on the store. At the lowest level, Nix
“derivations” represent promises of a build, stored in ‘.drv’ files in
the store. Guix produces such derivations, which are then interpreted
by the daemon to perform the build. Thus, Guix derivations can use
derivations produced by Nix (and vice versa).
With Nix and the [[http://nixos.org/nixpkgs][Nixpkgs]] distribution, package composition happens at
the Nix language level, but builders are usually written in Bash.
Conversely, Guix encourages the use of Scheme for both package
composition and builders. Likewise, the core functionality of Nix is
written in C++ and Perl; Guix relies on some of the original C++ code,
but exposes all the API as Scheme.
* Related software


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