How to Install Jed from AUR on Manjaro Linux

i5 with super floppy

One of the things most new (and even seasoned) users of Linux find frustrating is the organization of repositories. Linux is supposed to be the same yet when you want to install the jed text editor on Manjaro you have to go on a mining expedition and learn about the AUR (Arch User Repository).

Arch based distributions are notoriously difficult to use. Hopefully you read my earlier post about getting Boinc to run? With the Debian and RPM based distros it mostly kinda-sorta just works. Their package maintainers are incredibly remiss when it comes to including Oracle VirtualBox as a dependency, leaving people to scrounge. At least YABU distros have a custom Oracle VirtualBox package for Boinc, just the package maintainer for Boinc hasn’t been polite enough to flag as a dependency.


The Jed story is even worse. Arch based distros have created the concept of AUR (Arch User Repository). On the site it contains the following statement in bold.

DISCLAIMER: AUR packages are user produced content. Any use of the provided files is at your own risk.

If one believes all developers to be of good and decent making, this is a place for an industrious package developer to post the fruits of their labor and suddenly have it available to all ARCH based distributions. If one believes Russian/Chinese/insert-group-here hackers are out to distribute malicious code any way they can, then this is a cesspit from which there is no return.

The truth is found somewhere between those two goal posts. Most (possibly all) AUR packages must be built. If you had nothing better to do with your life you could reach and analyze each line of code before actually installing. You do that, right?

AUR is a community based thing. There are submission rules and if something is found to be malicious or non-conforming the moderators (or whatever they prefer to be called) will nuke it from AUR. Somebody, of course, must first be a victim that complains.

Given the build requirement, the very first time you install a package from AUR you get a lot of other stuff installed.

Jed command line install

AUR requires what Debian users would call “build-essentials” to be installed. Even if you never use jed as a text editor in a terminal, a new user of an Arch based distro should open a terminal window and install it first thing. You will then have most of the build environment you could ever want.

For those who just wanted the command without the knowledge, here:

sudo pamac build jed

For those who just want to search for a package in the AUR

sudo pamac search -a jed

Be warned that if you search for something common you will get a long list.