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Re: Updating /var/lib/dpkg/available

On Wed, 2015-06-10 at 13:09 +0200, gregor herrmann wrote:
> On Wed, 10 Jun 2015 11:46:15 +0100, Andrew Beverley wrote:
> > Continuing my package building attempts, I've just found that
> > my /var/lib/dpkg/available file was out of date (despite the system
> > being a completely fresh install on my VPS). As a result, my package
> > dependencies were being calculated incorrectly.
> I'm surprised that dh-make-perl uses this file?!

Sorry, clarification required! I think it's only using it in this (yet
to be applied) patch:


I thought it was using it elsewhere, but actually probably not...

> > 1. Is there any way to detect this situation, that we could add to
> > dh-make-perl?
> See above :)
> (Not sure if dh-make-perl warns about an outdated apt-file state.
> It does complain is /var/cache/apt/apt-file/ is empty, IIRC.)

Yes, I've definitely seen warnings for that.

> > 2. What is the correct way to update it? I found that neither "apt-get
> > update" nor "aptitude update" rebuilt it, which surprised me. I had to
> > install dselect and run "dselect update" in order to refresh it.
> dpkg --update-avail
> should do this.

Thanks, that works, but it needs each "Packages" file merging in with
--merge-avail. Interestingly the dpkg manual suggests "dselect update"
is the easier way to update the file.

I think what I may do is update the above patch to throw a warning:
currently, if it goes to get a package version from the "available"
file, then if it's missing it will add it to the missing packages list.
Instead, it should notify the user that one part of the system states
the package is available, but the version information cannot be


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