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Re: Is there a way to positively, uniquely identify which Debian release a program is running on?

On Wednesday 30 May 2007 22.46:30 Kris Deugau wrote:
> I've been writing custom utilities and libraries for various systems at
> work, and with one particular project recently it's become (more)
> important to know exactly which Debian release it's running on (at some
> stage or other between version-controlled-code and installed-"binary")
> so that I don't try to call a missing binary or create a .deb that
> requires a package that doesn't actually exist in the target dist.

In general: don't do that.  My machine has base-files from etch and thus can 
be considered to be etch, but there are a lot of packages from lenny and 
sid on it (including libc6, thanks to the dependency handling).  And if I 
don't reinstall the machine before lenny, it will even mix etch, lenny, 
lenny+1 and sid in a few years.  So what version is "installed" on the 

Version problems like you describe almost always boil down to versioned 
package dependencies.

Obviously, if you're in a controlled environment and you know that your 
target machines are "clean" etch or lenny, the problem becomes a lot 

-- vbi

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