tool used to download packages?

Derek Broughton news at
Thu Feb 8 02:23:34 UTC 2007

Andy Harrison wrote:

> On 2/7/07, Derek Broughton <news at> wrote:
>> > deb edgy main
>> That, in itself, voids your warranty :-)
> People sure seem to hate that app, I keep bumping into posts from
> people saying negative things about it.  I just used it to for nvidia
> drivers, media codecs, and some fonts.  It seemed to work fine.

I don't hate it, but people who know the Ubuntu packaging system far better
than me dislike it.  It can definitely cause problems updating... whether
your problems could be blamed on automatix, I don't know, but if it ain't
Ubuntu, results are not guaranteed.
>> > deb edgy-security main restricted
>> > universe multiverse
> Gotcha.  I dropped the ones anyway, so I'll just
> leave this one.

Yes, you _should_ have edgy-security, if nothing else, but once is
enough :-)
>> That looks hazardous - you're apparently downloading a package for Debian
>> and expecting it to work on Ubuntu.  It could...
> I believe I installed Google Earth as well as Picasa from there.  Both
> work fine, but, unfortunately, I notice the Picasa version that Google
> provides for Linux doesn't include the web album features.

I haven't tried google earth on Linux - if it's actually a Debian package,
it's fine as long as it doesn't need specific versions of software that
conflict with Ubuntu versions.  Unfortunately, that's often a problem.

>> > deb edgy main
>> Those look redundant too.
> But isn't redundancy good, though?  I usually configure at least a
> handful of CPAN repositories, for example.

I used to think so, but experience suggests that apt only tries to retrieve
a package from the first named mirror that contains the highest version of
the package.  So if you have that package in four mirrors, and the first
mirror is unreliable, it will never try the last three.

> Well, I have a reproduceable problem associated with a specific error
> message (400 URI Failure).  While I clearly have a messy source list
> file, it's not unreasonable to expect the application to handle such a
> specific error condition.
I think as long as you are only including Ubuntu sources, from released
software (ie, not feisty), that's reasonable.  If you start mixing in
completely unknown and potentially unreliable sources, there's no telling
if you might have installed something that breaks apt.  All I can add is
that I've never seen this failure, suggesting that the problem is in a
specific repository.

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