Yaourt is Dead! Use These Alternatives for AUR in Arch Linux

Yaourt had been the most popular AUR helper, but it is not being developed anymore. In this article, we list out some of the best alternatives to Yaourt for Arch-based Linux distributions.
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Yaourt had been the most popular AUR helper, but it is not being developed anymore. In this article, we list out some of the best alternatives to Yaourt for Arch-based Linux distributions.

Arch User Repository, popularly known as AUR, is the community-driven software repository for Arch users. Debian/Ubuntu users can think of AUR as the equivalent of PPA.

It contains packages that are not directly endorsed by Arch Linux. If someone develops software or package for Arch Linux, it can be provided through this community repositories. This enables the end-user to access more software than they get by default.

So, how do you use AUR then? Well, you need a different tool to install software from AUR. Archโ€™s package manager pacman doesnโ€™t support it directly. Hence, you need these โ€˜special toolsโ€™ called AUR helpers to automate the usage of AUR packages.

Yaourt (Yet AnOther User Repository Tool) was a wrapper for Pacman that enabled installing AUR packages on Arch Linux. It uses the same syntax as Pacman.

Yaourt also supported Arch User Repository for searching, installing, conflict resolution, and dependency maintenance.

However, Yaourt is no longer a solution.

In this article, you will see the best Yaourt alternatives that you can use for installing software from AUR.

1. yay

yay is the next best AUR helper written in Go to provide an interface of Pacman with minimal user input, yaourt-like search, and almost no dependencies.

Features of yay

  • Provides completions for AUR packages and downloads the PKGBUILD from ABS or AUR.
  • Supports search narrowing and no sourcing of PKGBUILD.
  • The binary has no additional dependencies than pacman.
  • Provides advanced dependency solver and removes make dependencies at the end of the build process.
  • Supports colored output when you enable the Color option in the /etc/pacman.conf file.
  • It can be made to support only AUR packages or only repo packages.
  • Un/Vote for packages

Installing yay

You can install yay by cloning the git repo and building it. Use the below command to install yay in Arch Linux :

sudo pacman -S --needed git base-devel
git clone https://aur.archlinux.org/yay.git
cd yay
makepkg -si

Using yay

Use Command
Searching an application yay -Ss <package-name>
Installing an application yay -S <package-name>
Present package-installation selection menu yay <package name>
Update system yay because of the alias set to yay -Syu

2. Paru

Paru is a feature-packed AUR helper, written in Rust language. It's been developed by one of the developers of yay AUR helper and both are under active development and maintenance. It offers a lot of features and minimal interaction.

Features of Paru

  • Print the PKGBUILD File with syntax highlighting
  • AUR comment support
  • Local repo and chroot support
  • Verbose search with -Sss
  • Flag to download AUR packages via SSH
  • Option to keep older packages in the local repo
  • Print news on upgrade
  • Support for signing packages
  • Interactively search for packages

Installing Paru

sudo pacman -S --needed base-devel 
git clone https://aur.archlinux.org/paru.git 
cd paru 
makepkg -si

Using Paru

Use Command
To search for packages paru -Ss <package name>
To install a package paru -S <package name>
To interactively search for packages paru <package name>
Update your system paru because of the alias set to paru -Syu

3. Pakku

Pakku is another pacman wrapper. Although its original creator went busy with other projects, the package is maintained by Pakku users and the Nim community. It does its job pretty nicely, and searching and installing applications from AUR removes dependencies after a build.

Features of pakku

  • Searching and installing packages from Arch User Repository.
  • Viewing files and changes between builds.
  • Building packages from official repositories and removing make dependencies after a build.
  • PKGBUILD retrieving and Pacman integration.
  • Pacman-like user interface and pacman options support.
  • Pacman configuration supports and no PKGBUILD sourcing.

Installing pakku

git clone https://aur.archlinux.org/pakku.git
cd pakku
makepkg -si

Using pakku

Use Command
Search for an application pakku -Ss <package name>
Install a package pakku -S <package name>
Only work with AUR packages pakku -Sz
Query all "dependency islands" pakku -Qdttt

4. aurutils

aurutils is basically a collection of scripts that automates the usage of the Arch User Repository. It can search AUR, check updates for different applications installed, and settle up dependencies issues.

Features of aurutils

  • aurutils uses a local repository which gives it the benefit of pacman file support, and all packages work with โ€“asdeps.
  • There can be multiple repos for different tasks.
  • Update local repository in one go with aursync -u.
  • pkgbase, long format and raw support for aursearch.
  • Ability to ignore package.

Installing aurutils

git clone https://aur.archlinux.org/aurutils.git
cd aurutils
makepkg -si

Using aurutils

Once installed aurutils, you need to configure it for use. You can find a detailed guide on configuring aurutils here.

Use Commands
Download and build AUR package and place it in the custom repository aur sync <name>
Installing a package from AUR use sudo pacman -S <name> to install downloaded aur package
Update all installed AUR packages aur sync -u
List AUR packages aur pkglist

These packages can be installed directly if you are already using Yaourt or any other AUR helper.

5. Pamac

Pamac is a gtk frontend for libalpm. It is the default package manager in Manjaro but you may also install Pamac on Arch Linux.

Pamac GUI allows to use packages from Snap, Flatpak and AUR. There is a CLI version as well and you can use it as an AUR helper.

Features of Pamac

  • CLI package management with pamac-cli
  • A GTK-3 GUI
  • Library to access package infos and run transactions
  • Flatpak and Snap support
  • Tray appindicator which notifies you about updates

Installing pamac

git clone https://aur.archlinux.org/pamac-aur.git
cd pamac-aur
makepkg -si

Using pamac

Pamac can be used either through the terminal or the GUI. I'll go with the command line here.

Use Command
Search for a package pamac search <package>
To install a package pamac install <package>
To uninstall a package pamac remove <package>
To display a list of all installed packages pamac list -i

For a detailed guide to pamac, you can refer to its Manjaro Wiki page.

6. Trizen

Trizen is a lightweight wrapper for AUR, written in Perl. Yes, Perl is still being used, don't be too surprised.

Features of Trizen

  • Search and install packages from AUR
  • Reading AUR comments for packages
  • Recursive resolve AUR dependencies
  • Built-in interaction with 'pacman'
  • Upgrade support for AUR packages

Install Trizen

git clone https://aur.archlinux.org/trizen.git 
cd trizen 
makepkg -si

Using Trizen

Use Command
To search for packages trizen -Ss <package name>
To install a package trizen -S <package name>
To display AUR comments trizen -C <package name>
To remove a package trizen -R <package name>

7. Pikaur

Pikaur is an AUR helper written in python, with minimal dependencies. It allows you to review the PKGBUILD all at once and build them without user interaction.

Pikaur wraps all the pacman options accurately except for -Syu which is being split into -Sy (to refresh package list first) and -Su (to install upgrades after the user confirmed the package list or altered it via Manual package selection).

Features of Pikaur

  • Retrieve PKGBUILDs from AUR and ABS
  • Build local PKGBUILDs with AUR deps
  • Show unread Arch news before sysupgrade
  • AUR package names in shell completion (bash, fish, zsh)
  • Interactively handle common build problems (like untrusted GPG key or checksum mismatch, wrong architecture)

Install Pikaur

sudo pacman -S --needed base-devel git 
git clone https://aur.archlinux.org/pikaur.git 
cd pikaur 
makepkg -fsri

Using Pikaur

Use Command
To search for packages pikaur -Ss <package name>
To install a package pikaur -S <package name>
To display package info pikaur -Si <package name>
To upgrade system pikaur -Syu

Which one to use?

Arch Linux has some more AUR helper that can automate specific tasks for the Arch User Repository.

To an average user like me, any AUR helper with a similar syntax as the Pacman command is more than sufficient.

๐Ÿ’ฌ What do you think? Which AUR helper do you want to use? Share it in the comments, please.

About the author
Abhishek Prakash

Abhishek Prakash

Created It's FOSS 11 years ago to share my Linux adventures. Have a Master's degree in Engineering and years of IT industry experience. Huge fan of Agatha Christie detective mysteries ๐Ÿ•ต๏ธโ€โ™‚๏ธ

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