2 min read

Yesterday, the team behind GNU Shepherd announced the release of GNU Shepherd version 0.6.0, a service manager which is written in Guile that looks after the herd of system services. It also provides a replacement for the service-managing capabilities of SysV-init (or any other init).

This release has been bootstrapped with few tools including, Autoconf 2.69, Automake 1.16.1, Makeinfo 6.5, Help2man 1.47.8.

What’s new in GNU Shepherd version 0.6.0?

  • Services can now be “one-shot”.
  • The ‘shepherd’ deletes its socket file upon termination.
  • The bug ‘herd stop S’ is no longer an error when S is already stopped.
  • The ‘herd’ exits with non-zero value while executing an action that fails.
  • The ‘shepherd’ ignores reboot errors while running in a container.
  • The translation of error messages has been fixed.
  • This release comes with a new translation that is ta (Tamil).
  • The list of updated translations include uk, zh_CN, fr, pt_BR, sv, da, es, ta,

Most of the users are happy and excited about this release. A user commented on the HackerNews thread, “I’ve written previously about how much I appreciate the Guile info manual. For a document in a relatively obscure help system (other than Emacs users, who even knows about Texinfo?), it’s carefully written with an eye to empowering its users. It’s perhaps a bit quixotic, but you get the feeling that the GNU project really wants to deliver an OS written in Scheme all the way down, totally under the control of an enlightened end user. The Shepherd project certainly fits with that vision.”

Another user commented, “I hesitate to speak for emacs users, because I’m not one really, but I suspect the info format feels really comfortable when viewed with emacs.”


Few users think that Shepherd might be a replacement for systemd, a software that provides building blocks for Linux operating system. A comment reads, “Is Shepherd meant to be a replacement for systemd (et al), then?”

To know more about this news, check out GNU’s official announcement.

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