pkgx install

To install node:

$ pkgx install node
installed: ~/.local/bin/node

Installations are just stubs that precisely specify what version of tools you want:

$ cat ~/.local/bin/node
exec pkgx node "$@"

Indeed, we only install one file to the system environment. Packages cache to ~/.pkgx, if you were to delete ~/.pkgx the installed shim would still work.

Because pkgx install operates via a pkgx shim, only the tools you install become available to the system environment. Open source is complex and tools can have hundreds of dependencies. With pkgx you don’t pollute your system with these unwanted tools (thus avoiding a myriad of unexpected consequences).

All your tools have minimal surface area.

sudo pkgx install

If you invoke pkgx install with sudo we install to /usr/local/bin.

It would be insecure to store the package caches in userland (~/.pkgx) and tools would not work for multiple users anyway; so if you install with root we also cache the packages (root-owned ofc) in /usr/local/opt.

Installing the active environment

As a convenience pkgx install (unadorned) installs the active environment.

$ env +node

(+node) $ pkgx install
installed: ~/.local/bin/node

$ env -node
error: node is installed  # installed items are removed from the environment

$ env +node
error: node is installed

$ env +node@20
error: node@20 is installed

$ env +node@18
# ^^ this is ok since you didn’t install this version

(+node@18) $ node --version

Controlling Installed Package Versions

pkgx install ruff@latest


pkgx install node@16

pkgx uninstall

[sudo] pkgx uninstall node

If you sudo installed you will need to sudo uninstall.

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