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dpkg -l and other tools do not report all packages?

  here's what debian web page returns when queried about kernel-source:

unstable kernel-source-2.4.9-ia64 010820.1   (22204.5k) 
	Linux kernel source for version 2.4.9 on IA-64

unstable kernel-source-2.4.8 2.4.8-1   (21495.9k) 
	Linux kernel source for version 2.4.8

unstable kernel-source-2.4.9 2.4.9-1   (21566.3k) 
	Linux kernel source for version 2.4.9

unstable kernel-source-2.2.19 2.2.19-7   (15193.6k) 
	Linux kernel source for version 2.2.19

  dpkg and grep-available only report kernel-source packages up to 2.4.5
(which is what I have installed), even though I just did apt-get update:

jojda:/home/erik# grep-available kernel-source|grep '^Package:
Package: kernel-source-2.0.33
Package: kernel-source-2.0.34
Package: kernel-source-2.0.35
Package: kernel-source-2.0.36
Package: kernel-source-2.0.38
Package: kernel-source-2.4.2
Package: kernel-source-2.4.3
Package: kernel-source-2.4.5
Package: kernel-source-2.2.1
Package: kernel-source-2.1.125
Package: kernel-source-2.2.14
Package: kernel-source-2.2.17

jojda:/home/erik# dpkg -l kernel-source\*
|/ Err?=(none)/Hold/Reinst-required/X=both-problems (Status,Err:
||/ Name                                          
Version                                        Description
un  kernel-source                                 
<none>                                         (no description
pn  kernel-source-2.0.33                          
<none>                                         (no description
pn  kernel-source-2.0.34                          
<none>                                         (no description
pn  kernel-source-2.0.35                          
<none>                                         (no description
rc  kernel-source-2.0.36                          
2.0.36-3                                       Linux kernel source.
pn  kernel-source-2.0.38                          
<none>                                         (no description
pn  kernel-source-2.1.125                         
<none>                                         (no description
pn  kernel-source-2.2.1                           
<none>                                         (no description
pn  kernel-source-2.2.14                          
<none>                                         (no description
pn  kernel-source-2.2.17                          
<none>                                         (no description
un  kernel-source-2.4                             
<none>                                         (no description
pn  kernel-source-2.4.2                           
<none>                                         (no description
pn  kernel-source-2.4.3                           
<none>                                         (no description
ii  kernel-source-2.4.5                           
2.4.5-1                                        Linux kernel source for
version 2.4.5

  why is that? is there any way to get accurate information? I can
apt-get install kernel-source-2.4.9 so the problem is not in outdated
package information...

  after I installed 2.4.9 it is listed but other (2.4.8) are not.

  grep available gave me same incomplete information (same as dpkg -l,
some packages are not listed)

  dpkg -p does not accept wildchars so it does not tell me which
packages are available, in addition to that it also only has information
about the same packages dpkg -l and grep-available has.


dpkg -p kernel-source-2.4.8
Package `kernel-source-2.4.8' is not available.

Use dpkg --info (= dpkg-deb --info) to examine archive files,
and dpkg --contents (= dpkg-deb --contents) to list their contents.

  --info and --contents only give information about specific package
file (*.deb) (so it's not useful to get information about which packages
are available).

  apt-cache search seems to be a little bit better:

jojda:~>apt-cache search kernel-source
kernel-source-2.2.19 - Linux kernel source for version 2.2.19
kernel-source-2.4.8 - Linux kernel source for version 2.4.8
kernel-source-2.4.9 - Linux kernel source for version 2.4.9
kernel-source-2.4.9-ia64 - Linux kernel source for version 2.4.9 on
freeswan - IPSEC utilities for FreeSWan
kernel-source-2.4.5 - Linux kernel source for version 2.4.5

  not sure why other kernel-source-* versions are not listed...

  it has been suggested on debian-user that I need to use dselect for
dpkg and other tools to get updated information which does not seem to
make any sense. as far as I can tell the design of the package
manipulation programs is basically having to sets of programs:

  low level (dpkg etc.) - there is only one set of these tools, user
basically does not need to use them directly

  higher level (dselect, apt-get, aptitude etc.) - front-ends meant to
be used by user, there are different ones with different features but
all work with the same underlying 'engine' (dpkg etc.) and all work with
same information (about packages - which ones are available, the status
of packages (installed, on hold etc.).

  is this right? if not, why? I mean it makes sense for it to work this
way (as opposed to having to use dselect or some other specific
front-end to get basic functionality of package system).

  any ideas? TIA


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