Bug#435714: apt: verbose dependency explanation
I had a co-worker ask me "is there a way to see why debian 'holds back'
some packages?". The way I do that, and the consensus on #debian-devel, is
that you try either installing one of the packages in question or a
dist-upgrade, with --dry-run turned on, and then see what it would have
I think it would be nice if you could ask apt why a particular package was
held up and have it give a a verbose report explaining the dependency
chain, similar to the way it does when you've installed an impossible
situation and it tells you the problem.
I suspect that the apt source is the only place the dependency resolution
logic exists, so I guess it makes sense for apt to provide such a feature.
I suppose that it could either be a command line switch to apt-get or maybe
a standalone tool.