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Re: [RFC] DEP-6: Meta-Package debian/control field

Steve Langasek wrote:

> On Sun, Dec 20, 2009 at 05:06:39PM +0100, David Paleino wrote:
>> In fact, when removing any dependency of the meta-package, it gets
>> removed as well, and all other dependencies become *leaf packages* that
>> autoremove will try to remove from the system. This is usually not
>> what the users want, as they probably installed (or had it by default)
>> the meta-package to have a "standard" environment, but don't want or
>> need specific packages.
> Have you looked at the prior art in this area in Ubuntu?

Nope, sorry, didn't even know Ubuntu treated metapackages in a special way.

> Ubuntu defines a special archive section, 'metapackages', which results in
> special tagging/handling of the Depends and Recommends of the package so
> that they're not autoremoved if the metapackage is removed.  This is
> implemented in the high-level package management tools.

Well, our proposal prospects something different: the metapackage is not 
removed (thus everything else is not autoremoved) if one of its Meta-
Depends/Depends is removed.

> In this scenario, with Recommends installed by default (the only sane
> model),

On my host, Recommends are not installed by default, and this is 
configurable. A similar configuration, and meta-packages using Recommends 
instead of Depends/Meta-Depends, would render them pretty useless.

> the vast majority of metapackage dependencies are moved from
> Depends to Recommends, so you can remove those Recommends manually without
> forcing removal of the metapackage;

This already happens now, or did I miss something?

Thanks for commenting,

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