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Re: Recommends for metapackages

"Eugene V. Lyubimkin" <jackyf@debian.org> writes:

> On 2012-07-10 18:10, Jonas Smedegaard wrote:
>> The very purpose of a meta-package is to _ensure_ that a certain set of 
>> packages is installed, not just recommend them: All (not only most) 
>> users of that package need all its dependencies satisfied
> My definition of meta-package is less strict than yours. I as user
> sometimes want '[meta]package X, but without packages Y and Z', and your
> definition absolutely rules that out.

That's not a meta package then. That's a collection of loosely coupled
stuff, and by that definition, a meta package should not use depends at
all, but always recommends, because someone may want to use metapackage
X, but without A, B and C. Might aswell get rid of them then.

> I saw many questions on forums like
> "I did '$packagemanager install $metapackage' and then after
> '$packagemanager remove $singlepackage', why $packagemanager now wants
> to remove all $metapackage?"
> , so I know I'm not alone. Using Recommends for non-core parts of
> metapackages' dependencies would nicely solve that.

Well, in case of GNOME, upstream considers n-m to be part of the core
system, to the best of my knowledge. If upstream does so, so should we.

Besides, the solution is very easy: don't want all the deps of the meta?
Don't install it. If you still want to pull most in, but exclude some,
see the script I posted earlier. It can easily be changed to echo an
apt-get line instead of a modified control file, if that's more


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