Questions about Arch packages

  1. When a package updates from, for instance, 52.3-1 to 52.3-2, what does this number after the dash(-) refer to? Is there a changelog available for these types of version updates?
  2. Why are packages like nvidia and firefox flagged out of date right now if they both seem to be the latest version?
  1. the -n is the build number. It may add a fix or two or dependency.

  2. Not sure. Sometimes users accidentally click packages making them obsolete. Or fake news they heard somewhere?

The PKGBUILD history is mirrored as a git repo on GitHub.

An easy way to see history is to go to the package page on Arch Linux website (example) and click View Changes on the right sidebar.

The number after dash is called pkgrel.

The release number. This is usually a positive integer number that allows to differentiate between consecutive builds of the same version of a package. As fixes and additional features are added to the PKGBUILD that influence the resulting package, the pkgrel should be incremented by 1. When a new version of the software is released, this value must be reset to 1. In exceptional cases other formats can be found in use, such as major.minor.

Firefox in Arch Linux repository is at 110.0, while the latest one is 110.0.1.

Seems like the package was earlier at 110.0.1 in Arch Linux repository too, but it was changed back to 110.0. (unless I’m misunderstanding something)

Probably a mistake by a user. Nvidia driver latest version is 525.89.02.


That is the pkgrel. It means that the software itself didn’t change but the package did.

99% of the time this means it was a rebuild. Since Arch is rolling, library versions can change in a way that require the packages to be rebuilt against the new libraries.

On rare occasions, it can be something like a change to the patches being applied on the Arch side.

There is no changelog but you can look at the package history in github.

Anyone can flag a package as being out-of-date. Sometimes it is done incorrectly.


I know it is a lot of 1’s but it changed from 110.0.1 to 111.0. :slight_smile:


My eyesight needs an upgrade :microscope:


Thanks, guys.


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