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A+ on Debian

A+ is available as a package for Debian/GNU Linux systems. As of this writing (October 2002) it is in the unstable distribution. If you are running unstable, all you have to do to get the full development environment is apt-get install xfonts-kapl aplus-fsf-dev.

If you are running the stable distribution, you can still get the A+ packages from unstable without upgrading anything else. This is all standard apt configuration, but it may not be well known, so it is described here.

  1. Put the line

    APT::Default-Release "stable";

    in your /etc/apt/apt.conf file. Create the file with just this line if it does not already exist.
  2. Add lines to your /etc/apt/sources.list file for the Debian mirrors of the unstable distribution. For example:

    deb http://ftp.us.debian.org/debian/ unstable main non-free contrib
    deb-src http://ftp.us.debian.org/debian/ unstable main non-free contrib

  3. Execute the command apt-get update to get the information about the packages in the unstable distribution, including the A+ packages.
  4. Now executing the command apt-get install xfonts-kapl aplus-fsf-dev will retrieve the A+ packages, because it now knows where to get them.

Other issues

The A+ configuration in the Debian packages are set up to use the Alt key as the A+ modifier key in XEmacs. The Windows™ key should be the Meta key in XEmacs, so there should be no conflict. You need to choose the PC104 keyboard in your X configuration for all these keys to be recognized by X.

If you only have a PC101 keyboard, you will have to make sure that one Alt key is the XEmacs Meta key and the other is the A+ modifier key. Ask for help if you need to do this. It involves using xmodmap.


For questions regarding A+ on Debian, or comments on these notes, please contact help@aplusdev.org.


This page was written by Neil Roeth.

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