Home Arch Linux Enable Parallel Downloading In Pacman In Arch Linux

Enable Parallel Downloading In Pacman In Arch Linux

By sk
Published: Updated: 77.8K views

Pacman version 6 is shipped with parallel downloads support. Here is how to enable parallel downloading in Pacman in Arch Linux and its variants like EndeavourOS, and Manjaro Linux.

What is Parallel download support in Pacman?

The reasons why Arch Linux is being loved by many people are:

  1. Pacman,
  2. Arch wiki,
  3. Rolling release model,
  4. and Arch User Repository (AUR).

Just ask any Arch user why he/she prefer Arch Linux over other distributions, they will probably point out any one or all of the aforementioned reasons.

The pacman package manager is one of the major distinguishing features of Arch Linux. It is fast, easy-to-use, and powerful package manager. Pacman is the default package manager for Arch Linux and its variants.

The latest pacman version is 6.0. The major change for this release is the implementation of parallel downloads. Yes, this feature downloads multiple files at the same time!

For instance, if you install something that need 4 dependencies, all files are downloaded in parallel by the same pacman instance, rather than one after the other.

For each file it tries mirrors serially in the order defined by mirrorlist file. If the first mirror fails for some reason then pacman will try the second mirror and so on.

In summary, Pacman 6.0 includes the following features by default:

  • parallel download support,
  • download retry support,
  • different events for download completion,
  • progress,
  • initialization,
  • multi-architecture support.

Note: Don't confuse this feature with Powerfill, a pacman wrapper that uses parallel and segmented downloading. This is different from powerpill, and the parallel download support is now built into pacman. No need for any external wrapper or tools!

Enable Parallel Downloading In Pacman In Arch Linux

Parallel download support in Pacman package manager can be enabled by following the steps given below:

1 Open /etc/pacman.conf file in your preferred editor:

$ sudo nano /etc/pacman.conf

2. Find the following line and uncomment it:

ParallelDownloads = 5
Enable parallel downloading in Pacman in Arch Linux OS
Enable parallel downloading in Pacman in Arch Linux OS

Here, ParallelDownloads option specifies number of concurrent download streams. The value needs to be a positive integer. It is disabled by default and the default value is 5. If this config option is not set then only one download stream is used (i.e. downloads happen sequentially).

3. Save the file and close it by pressing CTRL+O followed by CTRL+X. From now on, you will notice that the file download happens in parallel when you perform any pacman transaction.


In this brief guide we discussed about pacman's new feature called parallel downloading and how to enable parallel downloading in pacman in Arch Linux.

Parallel download support in pacman is very welcome addition and a fantastic improvement. Thanks to all the developers who made it happen!


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vick November 25, 2021 - 9:30 am

what if we change that download value to 10? what will happen… i cannot do this testing on my machine..!

sk November 25, 2021 - 11:41 am

10 is the number of concurrent download streams.

Mike March 25, 2023 - 11:49 pm

Thanks, this came in really handy when I had to upgrade all system packages after 1+ year of not using my Manjaro desktop. Really sped things up.


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