apt and automatic removal of unused dependencies

Michael Vogt michael.vogt at ubuntu.com
Tue Jul 5 11:36:28 CDT 2005

On Tue, Jul 05, 2005 at 05:42:36PM +0200, Wouter Stomp wrote:
> > This feature was pioneered by Daniel Burrows aptitude [1] and it works
> > by keeping track of what packages where installed as part of a
> > automatic dependency resolution and what where installed manually. If
> > a packages P was installed to satisfy a depedency and no other package
> > needs that depedency anymore, P will be removed automatically.
> What will happen when you remove a meta-package like ubuntu-desktop
> (because you want to remove one of the programs that come with Ubuntu)
> ??

Right now everything that was installed by the intaller is considered
a manual install. That means removing a meta-package does nothing. If
you install a meta-package and then remove it later it will ask if it
should remove the dependencies that where installed as part of that
package. I think that we should add special handling for meta-packages
(this is something that comes handy for other use-cases too) and
support from the application to "unmark" a package from the automatic
dependency handling (extend synaptic to support that, aptitude does
already have support for it).
> > The patched version of apt support keeping track of automatic
> > depedencies now regardless if you install packages with apt-get,
> > aptitutde, python-apt or synaptic. The removal will happen if you run:
> > $ sudo apt-get remove --auto-remove $packagename
> When you remove something without the --auto-remove option, will it be
> possible to remove the unused dependencies later?

Yes. On the next --auto-remove run. If not, that's a bug :)


Linux is not The Answer. Yes is the answer. Linux is The Question. - Neo

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