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Re: how to find why packages are automatically installed?

On Tue, Feb 24, 2009 at 2:05 PM, Daniel Burrows <dburrows@debian.org> wrote:
> On Tue, Feb 24, 2009 at 12:28:38PM +0000, Aneurin Price <aneurin.price@gmail.com> was heard to say:
>> To expand upon this, I believe the OP's situation is some behaviour I've
>> also seen, which seemed odd until I thought about it and couldn't actually
>> come up with a better way:
>  I'm pretty sure this is different -- I was talking about the
> situation of "A Depends: B | C".  People sometimes think that if both
> B and C are installed, aptitude should guess which one they don't want
> and remove it.

Hmm, what happens in the case that exactly one of B or C is marked auto?

>> Assume you have aptitude set not to install recommends automatically.
>  How did you do that?  Just from the internal options menu?

Yes, as I recall. Maybe tweaked a config file but I guess that's equivalent.

>> It's annoying because it means that install and purge are not symmetric
>> operations, and I initially felt (in the case where aptitude is set no to
>> install recommends) that aptitude should remove packages marked as
>> automatically installed when no packages depend on them. However, this
>> could have the effect of causing half the system to be uninstalled when
>> aptitude is changed from 'install recommends' to 'ignore recommends', so I
>> presume that's why it's not done. For all I know there's a setting
>> somewhere to make it do this :P.
>  The setting is Aptitude::Keep-Recommends.  But in fact, this isn't
> enabled by default, although passing --without-recommends on the
> command-line enables it automatically for exactly the reason you pointed
> out.

I read that as saying that setting the option from the preferences menu,
rather than the command-line, will *not* automatically enable
Aptitude::Keep-Recommends. Is that correct?

>  Another problem is that aptitude now uses apt for the autoremove
> stuff, so the variables that control that keep changing and I don't
> always find out / remember the new names.  e.g., I just (re)discovered
> "Apt::AutoRemove::RecommendsImportant", which has more or less the same
> effect as Aptitude::Keep-Recommends, and also defaults to "true".  To
> make aptitude actually remove recommended packages, you need to set that
> to "false" along with Keep-Recommends.

Possibly this is the root of it then. Either way it's not a big enough
issue that I can be bothered to look into it, to be honest.


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