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Re: aptitude --mind-your-own-business option?

On Sun, Dec 03, 2006 at 09:24:58 -0800, Marc Shapiro wrote:


> In a previous post on this thread (or one of the many similar threads 
> now going strong) I said that aptitude was working fine for me in my 
> brand new Etch install.  This is MOSTLY true.  It works fine from the 
> command line, which is how I use it.  But after several of the other 
> posts I decided to look at the interactive interface.  They DO NOT work 
> the same!
> From the command line:
> # aptitude upgrade
> Reading package lists... Done
> Building dependency tree... Done
> Reading extended state information     
> Initializing package states... Done
> Reading task descriptions... Done 
> Building tag database... Done   
> The following packages have been kept back:
>  openoffice.org-java-common python-pygame thunderbird
> The following packages will be upgraded:
>  libssl0.9.8 openssl
> 2 packages upgraded, 0 newly installed, 0 to remove and 3 not upgraded.
> Need to get 3720kB of archives. After unpacking 164kB will be used.
> Do you want to continue? [Y/n/?] n
> Abort.
> 3 packages held back
> 2 packages upgraded
> 0 packages deleted
> This, I have no problem with, but...
> From the interactive interface aptitude wants to:
>    Delete         1 package due to unmet dependancies
>    Hold           5 packages
>    Install       25 packages
>    Auto Install 172 packages
>    Remove         7 packages
> Most of the 25 packages to be installed are Gnome related.  I do NOT use 
> Gnome!  I have NEVER installed Gnome (or KDE) on this system.  Cleaning 
> out all of the cruft from Gnome and KDE from my Sarge system is what 
> prompted me to do a clean install for Etch in the first place.  I don't 
> want to start this all over again.
> Why the difference between the two modes?  It is not, apparently, due to 
> "Suggests' or 'Recommends' since they are listed seperately in the 
> interactive mode and are not among the packages to be installed (at 
> least not the regular installed packages, I have not check for them in 
> the 172 packages to be auto-installed).
> How do I get the interactive mode to act the same as the command line?  
> If I deselect the packages that I do not want will they stay that way?  
> Will aptitude later decide that other gnome packages (and their millions 
> of dependancies) should be installed?
> Should I just stick with the command line since I am comfortable with it 
> and it seems to do what I want without having to tweak it?

I am beginning to see why aptitude drives some people crazy. I can think
of a few things which might explain this behavior:

- "U" in interactive mode is like "dist-upgrade" on the command line.
  You could check if "aptitude --simulate dist-upgrade" on the command
  line would lead to the same actions. "U" in interactive mode will
  cause aptitude to try upgrading the three packages which have been
  kept back from "upgrade" on the command line. I agree with you that
  this should not pull in 25 Gnome packages (and 127 dependencies),

- Do you alternate between running as root and running with "sudo
  aptitude"? That causes confusion with the configuration file.

- Maybe aptitude remembers something it wanted to do earlier. Does
  "Cancel Pending Actions" in interactive mode or "aptitude keep-all" on
  the command line restore sane behavior?


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