Monthly Downloads: 8
Programming language: Haskell
License: MIT License
Tags: System    

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apotiki: a faster debian repository


(image source)

apotiki generates debian repositories fast. its goal is to be a great companion to fpm and jenkins.

apotiki operates with the following features and constraints:

  • Supports a single debian release
  • Supports a single debian component
  • Supports an arbitrary number of architectures which need to be preprovisionned
  • Requires a valid PGP private key for signing

The Story

You operate a production environment and rely on software that is more recent than is available on a standard Debian or Ubuntu distribution ? Apotiki helps you distribute software by creating a separate debian repository which you can add to your apt sources.

Turns out there's already software available for this, such as freight, apotiki's angle is to work very fast for the most common use case.

Companion software

fpm is a great tool to build Debian packages with. It can produce packages from directories, gems, npm or pip libraries.

jenkins or travis-ci can produce artifacts by running scripts.


apotiki has two modes of operation, try not to mix the two too much:

  • apotiki insert: pushes a list of packages, given on the command line to the repo
  • apotiki web: start up a web service on port 8000 to display the repository and accept new packages

Running apotiki with no arguments or help will tell you a bit about usage.

If you wish to submit packages to the repository with curl here is the relevant command line assuming your package file is package-foo.deb

curl -X POST -F "package=@/path/to/package-foo.deb" http://repo-host:8000/repo


Apotiki is a haskell program and relies on both the ghc compiler and cabal. They are probably already available in your platform of choice. for instance, on debian based systems, just run apt-get install cabal-install.

Once cabal is installed, just run:

cabal update
cabal install apotiki


Alternatively, you can build apotiki with docker. Just run:

sudo docker build .

The resulting container will have the built cabal executable.


The configuration file format resembles is a simple column separated format, no comment lines are allowed and all configuration keys are expected to be downcased.

port: 4000
architectures: i386 amd64
component: main
release: precise
label: Apotiki
origin: Apotiki
repo: /srv/apotiki
logfile: STDOUT
  Version: GnuPG v2.0.22 (GNU/Linux)

  [base64 nonsense...]

  • host: IP to listen on for web service
  • port: port to listen on for input web service
  • architectures: list of supported architectures in your repo
  • component: name of the release component, a single component is supported for now
  • release: name of the debian release you wish to expose
  • label and origin: Debian repository format details, see https://wiki.debian.org/RepositoryFormat#Label
  • repo: directory where the repo will live
  • logfile: either STDOUT for console logging or a path to log to
  • pgp-key: ascii-armored export of the PGP key to sign the repo with

The PGP private key you wish to use can be exported with:

gpg -a --export-secret-keys [email protected]

The config file path can be controlled with the APOTIKI_CONFIG environment variable.


Error handling is suboptimal to say the least. we'll get there.