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Note: archup is a dead project, you can use aarchupAUR instead, a fork of archup.

archup is a small C application which informs the user when system-updates for Archlinux are available. It's licenced under the GPLv3. In contrast to other update notifiers archup is intended to be lightweight and just do what it should: notify about possible updates.

archup uses GTk+ and libnotify to show a desktop notification if updates are available. It follows the unix-philosophy of "just doing one thing, but doing it well". It just notifies about new updates but the packagedatabase has to be updated by the user (better said a cronjob). With a cronjob archup can be used to regulary check for new updates and get a desktop notification if there are some.


From the AUR

Install archupAUR from the AUR.


Get a working-copy of archup:

git clone git://

Change to the directory of the downloaded source and then follow the commands below:

$ autoconf
$ ./configure
$ make
$ make install

This installs the binary to /usr/bin/archup and the other files to /usr/share/doc/archup.


archup can simply be invoked by executing it from the commandline. But you surely want to automate this task and let archup continouisly be run with a cronjob.


The most simple setup is for a single user system where you want to check once an hour for updates. In this case just copy the /usr/share/doc/archup/cronhourly.example to /etc/cron.hourly/

# cp /usr/share/doc/archup/cronhourly.example /etc/cron.hourly/

and make it executable with

# chmod 755 /etc/cron.hourly/

Do not forget to open this file with a text editor of your choice and change the username of the arch_user value with your username.

Now every hour your package database will get updated and after that archup will be executed. If there are updates archup shows a desktop notification, if there are no updates nothing will happen. The desktop notification will automatically disappear after 60min or if you simply click on it.

Other intervals

If you want to execute archup at other intervals than hourly you are free to do so simply by setting up a custom cronjob (read man cron for more on this).

Some hints on this:

  • you can adjust the timeout value, before the notification will disappear with the --timeout option of archup.
  • you should take care that the packagedatabase gets updated by executing /usr/bin/pacman -Sy before archup gets executed.
  • if you wanna start a graphical application from a cronjob you propably have to set the DISPLAY and XAUTHORITY values. The best is taking a look at /usr/share/doc/archup/cronhourly.example and get your inspiration there.
if [ -z "$(pgrep pacman)" ];then
        /usr/bin/pacman -Sy > /dev/null

XAUTHORITY=/home/$arch_user/.Xauthority DISPLAY=:0.0 /usr/bin/archup --uid $(id -u $arch_user)
Note: Make sure to replace "arch_user" with the specific user.


If you want to use notify-osdAUR, be aware that notify-osd doesn't respect libnotify timeouts and thus the notifications will disappear in the regular notify-osd interval and not in the one you tell archup. But there's a patch for notify-osd which fixes this.

See also