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Bug#510928: Needs way to set tasksel/desktop with hacking /var/cache/debconf/config.dat

Just adding some thoughts.

On Tuesday 06 January 2009, Daniel Dickinson wrote:
> It'd be useful to be able to set the desktop for tasksel after
> installing a standard system (e.g. when not using an xfce cdrom but
> wanting xfce as the desktop later).  This also could help with
> preseeding a desktop that doesn't use gnome but is different than the
> usual.

See #506406 for reference.
In general support for the various desktop environments in tasksel has 
been primairily developed for use from Debian Installer.

Interactive installation of desktop tasks using tasksel from the command 
line (either using tasksel interactive or using the --install option) has 
been somewhat overlooked.

The fact that the debconf variable tasksel/desktop needs to be set to get 
the desired result or for correct behavior is not obvious, nor is there 
an accessible way to set it. One option could be to add a '--desktop' 
option that can (must?) be passed when '--new-install' is not used and 
the desktop task is selected, but that's not really clean or 

The same goes for language tasks. Maybe those should be entirely ignored 
if the --new-install option is not used.

Possibly tasksel should not allow some types of tasks (such as the desktop 
environment specific ones) to be specified with the --install option (as 
they are supposed to be installed by using "desktop" in combination with 
the correct tasksel/desktop value).

> Would this also affect tasks in aptitude, or is that only affected by
> debian-tasks.desc (and task fields if applicable)?

It would not.

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