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How to create an index file for a local collection of deb packages?

I run Debian Linux, and use dselect to select and install packages.
I have a collection of about 1300 MB of my favorite required and
desired packages in a subdirectory -- everything needed for a full
system installation and then some, and would like to use that
collection as the source of packages for local network installations
where I use dselect to select and install a subset of those packages.

The big gotcha is that dselect does not see a useable index file
that somehow lists all of those packages.

How can I make the required index file(s) so that dselect will be
happy with that collection and that subdirectory as a source of


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