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dpkg should recommend dselect

On Fri, 9 Aug 2002 17:56:23 +0200
Josip Rodin <joy@gkvk.hr> wrote:

> On Fri, Aug 09, 2002 at 07:51:59PM +1000, Glenn McGrath wrote:
> > Technically it shouldnt be a dependency, its a only a dependency to
> > protect stupid people.
> No. Someone can be using dselect to run a distribution upgrade and there
> is a possibility a random package will break it and leave the user with
> new dpkg installed and new dselect not installed, thus disabling them
> from upgrading further without some kind of manual intervention.

>From 7.2 in the policy manual.
    This declares an absolute dependency. A package will not be configured
unless all of the packages listed in its Depends field have been correctly

    The Depends field should be used if the depended-on package is
required for the depending package to provide a significant amount of

The Depends field should also be used if the postinst, prerm or postrm
scripts require the package to be present in order to run. Note, however,
that the postrm cannot rely on any non-essential packages to be present
during the purge phase. 

    This declares a strong, but not absolute, dependency.

The Recommends field should list packages that would be found together
with this one in all but unusual installations. 

Which of these best fits the dpkg-dselect situation, is dselect an
absolute dependency... no, should it be installed in all but unusual
installations... yes.

If dpkg Recommends: dselect, then when a user upgrades the old dpkg
package using the old dselect, the old dselect will see that the new dpkg
Recommends: dselect, and the old dselect will mark the new dselect package
to be installed.

For any breakage to happen the user would have to manually unselect the
dselect package.

I think it would be sad to see this problem go unresolved till sarge+1


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