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suggestion: facilitate local dependency problems

I sometimes install software locally that certain packages depend on.
To avoid breaking dselect, I usually make a .deb of this software, update
my package list, and install it.  Sometimes, for various reasons, this
isn't convenient; the way I partition the software may differ from the
package maintainer's divisions.  This is particularly a nuisance when
dealing with dependencies for a specific version of a package.

I vaguely remember reading somewhere that dpkg might be changed to
allow specifying versions in the provides field.  I would find this
extremely convenient.

Another possibility might be to add a placeholder record.  In other
words, through dpkg, dselect, or apt, the admin could modify a special
record which tells the system not to worry about dependencies for
a list of packages or virtual packages.  The admin could also specify
which versions of each package should be considered satisfied or
installed, including the option to ignore version numbers altogether.
This would solve the same problem in a perhaps more flexible fashion.

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