Installing optional packages

Haiku has a temporary script as a band-aid for the lack of a proper package manager. The script is named installoptionalpackage and allows the end user to easily download and install common pieces of 3rd party software compiled for Haiku.

NOTE: With the recent incorporation of package management, this software installation method is obsolete and removed. See Installing applications for instructions.


  • Required: Recent Haiku version
  • Required: An Internet connection

The command line options of installoptionalpackage

  • -a Add one or more packages and all dependencies
  • -s Show the final list of packages that would be installed
  • -f Remove cached data and list installable packages
  • -h Print this help.
  • -l List installable packages

Running the script for the first time

The first time you run the installoptionalpackage script, it will build a local cache of the available Haiku sanctioned 3rd party packages in /boot/common/data/optional-packages/. The local cache the installoptionalpackage creates can be cleared via the -f option.

~> installoptionalpackage -l
Fetching OptionalPackages …
Fetching OptionalPackageDependencies …
Fetching OptionalBuildFeatures …
Generating a list of Package Names …
…warning: Beam cannot be installed because of DevelopmentMin
…warning: Bluetooth cannot be installed
…warning: Development cannot be installed
…warning: DevelopmentBase cannot be installed
…warning: DevelopmentMin cannot be installed
…warning: ICU-devel cannot be installed because of DevelopmentMin
…warning: LibLayout cannot be installed because of DevelopmentMin
…warning: NetFS cannot be installed because of UserlandFS
…warning: UserlandFS cannot be installed
…warning: Welcome cannot be installed
…warning: WifiFirmwareScriptData cannot be installed

Available Optional Packages: abi-compliance-checker apr apr-util beae bebook behappy beoscompatibility bepdf bezillabrowser bzip cdrecord clockwerk clucene cmake curl cvs expat friss gettext git keymapswitcher libevent libiconv libxml2 libxslt links mandatorypackages mercurial nano neon netsurf ocaml opensound openssh openssl p7zip pcre pe perl python rsync sed sqlite subversion tar trackernewtemplates transmission vim vision vlc webpositive wonderbrush xz-utils yasm

Installing optional package

As an example, below we will be installing the Vim optional package. The installation process is easy, simply pull up the Haiku Terminal and execute installoptionalpackage with the -a option to install the specified package and all dependencies.

~> installoptionalpackage -a vim
To be installed:  Vim LibIconv
Installing …
Downloading …
2010-05-10 17:02:43 URL: [85195378519537] -> “” [1]
Extracting …
Installing …
Downloading …
2010-05-10 17:02:50 URL: [15598051559805] -> “” [1]
Extracting …