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Bug#426402: apt: Need better way to specify mirrors for Debian repositiories

Package: apt
Severity: wishlist

I am sure this is not original. Applies to Debian package repositories since
they have a uniform structure:

Sometimes (like now!), not all packages have made it to all mirrors, or
one's favorite, closest mirror is down. I would like a better way of
specifitying Debian mirrors. "Foreign" repos would remain is now and the
current syntax would remain valid for Debian as well.

Something like:
Debian Mirrors:
Preferred Mirror: ftp://...........
Mirror 2: http://.......
Mirror 3 ...
End Debian Mirrors

For ALL Debian stuff, stable, main, contrib, whatever, the preferred mirror
would be tested first. If this fails, the 2nd, etc.

Right now to do this, I need to duplicate the entire series of Debian repos
for each mirror.   

-- Package-specific info:

-- apt-config dump --

APT "";
APT::Architecture "i386";
APT::Build-Essential "";
APT::Build-Essential:: "build-essential";
APT::Default-Release "unstable";
APT::Cache-Limit "141943904";
Dir "/";
Dir::State "var/lib/apt/";
Dir::State::lists "lists/";
Dir::State::cdroms "cdroms.list";
Dir::State::userstatus "status.user";
Dir::State::status "/var/lib/dpkg/status";
Dir::Cache "var/cache/apt/";
Dir::Cache::archives "archives/";
Dir::Cache::srcpkgcache "srcpkgcache.bin";
Dir::Cache::pkgcache "pkgcache.bin";
Dir::Etc "etc/apt/";
Dir::Etc::sourcelist "sources.list";
Dir::Etc::sourceparts "sources.list.d";
Dir::Etc::vendorlist "vendors.list";
Dir::Etc::vendorparts "vendors.list.d";
Dir::Etc::main "apt.conf";
Dir::Etc::parts "apt.conf.d";
Dir::Etc::preferences "preferences";
Dir::Bin "";
Dir::Bin::methods "/usr/lib/apt/methods";
Dir::Bin::dpkg "/usr/bin/dpkg";
DPkg "";
DPkg::Pre-Install-Pkgs "";
DPkg::Pre-Install-Pkgs:: "/usr/sbin/apt-listbugs apt || exit 10";
DPkg::Pre-Install-Pkgs:: "/usr/bin/apt-listchanges --apt || test $? -ne 10";
DPkg::Pre-Install-Pkgs:: "/usr/sbin/dpkg-preconfigure --apt || true";
DPkg::Tools "";
DPkg::Tools::Options "";
DPkg::Tools::Options::/usr/sbin/apt-listbugs "";
DPkg::Tools::Options::/usr/sbin/apt-listbugs::Version "2";
DPkg::Tools::Options::/usr/bin/apt-listchanges "";
DPkg::Tools::Options::/usr/bin/apt-listchanges::Version "2";
DPkg::Post-Invoke "";
DPkg::Post-Invoke:: "if [ -x /usr/bin/debsums ]; then /usr/bin/debsums --generate=nocheck -sp /var/cache/apt/archives; fi";

-- /etc/apt/preferences --

# stuff added for Java?
Package: *
Pin: release a=testing
Pin-Priority: 650

Package: *
Pin: release a=unstable
Pin-Priority: 600

-- /etc/apt/sources.list --

deb file:/var/cache/apt-build/repository apt-build main
# See sources.list(5) for more information, especialy
# Remember that you can only use http, ftp or file URIs
# CDROMs are managed through the apt-cdrom tool.

# main mirrors, local!
deb http://mirror.hamakor.org.il/pub/mirrors/debian/ testing main
deb-src http://mirror.hamakor.org.il/pub/mirrors/debian/ testing main

deb http://mirror.hamakor.org.il/pub/mirrors/debian/ unstable main
deb-src http://mirror.hamakor.org.il/pub/mirrors/debian/ unstable main

deb http://mirror.hamakor.org.il/pub/mirrors/debian/ stable main
deb-src http://mirror.hamakor.org.il/pub/mirrors/debian/ stable main

deb http://mirror.hamakor.org.il/pub/mirrors/debian/ testing contrib non-free
deb-src http://mirror.hamakor.org.il/pub/mirrors/debian/ testing contrib non-free
deb http://mirror.hamakor.org.il/pub/mirrors/debian/ unstable contrib non-free
deb-src http://mirror.hamakor.org.il/pub/mirrors/debian/ unstable contrib non-free
deb http://mirror.hamakor.org.il/pub/mirrors/debian/ stable contrib non-free
deb-src http://mirror.hamakor.org.il/pub/mirrors/debian/ stable contrib non-free

# Security updates for "stable"
#deb http://security.debian.org stable/updates main contrib non-free
#deb http://security.debian.org testing/updates main contrib non-free

# Evolution
#deb ftp://ftp.ximian.com/pub/debian stable main
#deb-src ftp://ftp.ximian.com/pub/debian stable main

# Blades Repository (pppoeconf & co)
#deb http://people.debian.org/~blade/testing ./
#deb-src http://people.debian.org/~blade/testing ./

#new DRI locations?
#deb http://www.nixnuts.net/files/ ./
#deb-src http://www.nixnuts.net/files/ ./

# system imager site
#deb http://download.systemimager.org/debian stable main

#deb http://smarden.org/pape/Debian sarge unofficial
#deb-src http://smarden.org/pape/Debian sarge unofficial

# more recent wine versions:
deb http://wine.sourceforge.net/apt/ binary/
deb-src http://wine.sourceforge.net/apt/ source/

# an xorg package
#deb http://www.acm.cs.rpi.edu/~dilinger/xorg/ ./
#deb-src http://www.acm.cs.rpi.edu/~dilinger/xorg/ ./

#the nermerly C#-like compiler for .net
deb http://nemerle.org/download/deb/ ./
deb-src http://nemerle.org/download/deb/ ./

# open virtual
deb http://debian.systs.org/ stable openvz

# quake3 scorpius
deb http://scorpius.homelinux.org/~marc/debian binary/
deb-src http://scorpius.homelinux.org/~marc/debian source/

# aldrin
deb http://deb.zeitherrschaft.org/edgy binary/
deb-src http://deb.zeitherrschaft.org/edgy source/

# new rosegarden musix reporitory
deb ftp://musix.ourproject.org/pub/musix/deb/ ./

-- System Information:
Debian Release: lenny/sid
  APT prefers unstable
  APT policy: (990, 'unstable'), (650, 'testing'), (500, 'stable')
Architecture: i386 (i686)

Kernel: Linux 2.6.21-rt7-davidb (SMP w/1 CPU core; PREEMPT)
Locale: LANG=en_US, LC_CTYPE=en_US (charmap=ISO-8859-1)
Shell: /bin/sh linked to /bin/bash

Versions of packages apt depends on:
ii  debian-archive-keyring  2007.02.19       GnuPG archive keys of the Debian a
ii  libc6                   2.5-9            GNU C Library: Shared libraries
ii  libgcc1                 1:4.2-20070525-1 GCC support library
ii  libstdc++6              4.2-20070525-1   The GNU Standard C++ Library v3

apt recommends no packages.

-- no debconf information

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