I'm running NetBSD in a virtual machine. Documentation and explanations on how to use pkgsrc are scarce. Let's say I want to install vim for NetBSD. What would I type? Do I need a URL? Do I need a specific version? Do I need to set up a directory for building the source of vim?

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    Sorry, dude, but as a former long-term user of NetBSD (this being >10 years ago), I think claiming pkgsrc was »scarcely« documented is just utterly wrong. netbsd.org/docs/pkgsrc May 9, 2016 at 21:33

2 Answers 2


As Andreas said, pkgsrc is very well documented. Follow the pkgsrc guide and you should be in business in no time


Suppose you've unpacked the pkgsrc tree into /home/melab/pkgsrc. Then you can build gvim as follows:

cd /home/melab/pkgsrc/editors/gvim
make package install clean

Note that make might be /usr/pkg/bin/bmake if you bootstrapped pkgsrc yourself with default options, though NetBSD /usr/bin/make is really bmake. This very simple explanation glosses over all the fine tuning that's possible by editing the pkgsrc settings file (/etc/mk.conf or perhaps /usr/pkg/etc/mk.conf) - for that you would need to check the extensive documentation.

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