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Re: Why does aptitude do this?

Sunday, 19 February 2006 13:29, Rob Blomquist wrote:
> The following packages are unused and will be REMOVED:
>   amor eyesapplet fifteenapplet kdetoys kmoon kodo kteatime ktux
>   kweather kworldclock xmms

Those packages are marked as automatically installed, which implies you 
did not manually install them, but you only wanted them because they 
fulfilled a dependency. Because nothing else on the system depends on 
them, they are selected for removal. In most cases, this is a good 
thing, because it means that, for example, shared libraries used by a 
single program will be removed when you remove that program or when an 
updated version of the program no longer depends on it. Having less 
unused software is good security practice and saves space.

For some reason, packages that you do actively want have become marked 
as automatically installed (perhaps you installed them using something 
other than aptitude; it is inadvisable to use other package management 
tools alongside aptitude). You can correct this by issuing:

# aptitude unmarkauto amor eyesapplet fifteenapplet kdetoys kmoon kodo \ 
kteatime ktux kweather kworldclock xmms

See "markauto, unmarkauto" in the Command-Line Actions section of
man 8 aptitude, and "Managing automatically installed packages" 
in /usr/share/doc/aptitude/README for more information.

> How can I stop that from running? I don't want any packages removed
> from my system unless I say so. Twice now I have used the aptitude
> GUI, and deleted big chunks of my system that I had to reinstall.

From /usr/share/doc/aptitude/README:


Configuration file format

In its basic form, aptitude's configuration file is a list of options 
and their values. Each line of the file should have the form ``Option 
Value;'': for instance, the following line in the configuration file 
sets the option Aptitude::Theme to ``Dselect''.

Aptitude::Theme "Dselect";


aptitude's configuration is read from the following sources, in order:


2. The system configuration file, /etc/apt/apt.conf.




Description: If this option is true, automatically installed packages 
which are no longer required will be automatically removed. For more 
information, see the section called ``Managing automatically installed 



So the answer to your question is to put this in your /etc/apt/apt.conf:

Option:Aptitude::Delete-Unused "false";

> Consequently, I am now staying away from that GUI and am running it
> from the CL.

I personally find that aptitude's GUI is incomprehensible, but that it 
is far superior to apt-get on the command-line, partly because it does 
remove unused cruft (but also because the resolver is better).

Alex Nordstrom
Please do not CC me in followups; I am subscribed to debian-user.

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