Re: FAQ: Essential vs. Required
Osamu Aoki wrote:
> restore things. Systems with only the Required packages are probably
> inadequate for most purposes, but they do have enough functionality to
> allow the sysadmin to boot and install more software.
> + <p>Please note that "Priority: required" could be used to mark those
> + packages which should be essential but can't be marked as
> + "Essential: yes" in the package description field, e.g.,
> + <package>libc6</package> or <package>mawk</package>.
"can't" is not the right word here.
It's not always that we "can't" but sometimes we just "don't want to".
makedev, for example, is considered "required", but if you remove it,
you can easily install it again using dselect/apt, and packages normally
use MAKEDEV only in maintainer scripts, that's why it's only required
and not essential.
In some sense, "required and essential" is like a priority over
"just required" (expect that you can have a package of extra priority
having the essential flag if it conflicts and replaces an essential package).