Questions about linux-latest package and updates

Hi. Last week I switched to Manjaro after being a casual Ubuntu user for 5 years. That being said, I have basic knowledge on most linux-related stuff, but I’m definitely not an expert. As yesterday came out the first update since I’m using it, I have a some noob questions regarding the update and elements of it. If this isn’t the place where I should be asking this, please let me know.
What is a meta-package? And more specifically, what is the linux-latest meta-package? I’m guessing it has something to do with the kernel, maybe is the latest stable kernel release? Why does linux-latest conflicts with almost every kernel? I’m asking it because the update seems to be forcing me to install linux-latest which conflicts with the kernel my release (Community LXQT) shipped with, which is linux56 (I already installed linux54, and that’s the kernel I’m running, so I have no problem in removing it). Can I not install linux-latest? Or it is fully recommended that I do?
Yesterday, a Testing Branch update was also released, so my question is: if I update normally with “sudo pacman -Syyu” I will only get the Stable Branch update right? How can I get the Testing update instead? I won’t do it, I just want to know how to do it.

Since you are already running linux54, you could go to Manjaro Settings Manager and uninstall linux56. Then if you would like, you can also install linux58 from there. So you don’t have to install linux-latest.

If you have the linux-latest package installed, it will assist you to automatically update to the latest kernel (eg. 5.8 to 5.9) when linux58 becomes EOL. I don’t personally use that package. I do it manually as mentioned above, when the latest kernel becomes EOL.

If you are on stable branch, you will only get stable updates. Check your branch by:

cat /etc/pacman-mirrors.conf | grep Branch

Learn more about switching brances here.


Not the greatest at this but the linux latest package is used to put you on the latest kernel. When a kernel becomes EOL and is removed from the repos linux latest will switch you to the latest stable which atm is 5.8. I’m pretty sure its safe to remove if you switch to a LTS kernel


Additionally to all nice things already told: Meta package and package group - ArchWiki

pacman-mirrors -G shows also what branch you are on.


Oh I see. Thanks you all for your awesome answers!

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