Universe/Multiverse enabled by default in ubuntu-server

Evan Klitzke evan at yelp.com
Thu Aug 9 04:25:18 UTC 2007

On 8/8/07, Mathias Gug <mathiaz at ubuntu.com> wrote:
> Hello,
> The Universe and Multiverse repositories are enabled by default on a
> fresh ubuntu-server install. This change was implemented as of Feisty
> and outlined here:
> https://wiki.ubuntu.com/AlwaysEnableUniverseMultiverse.
> This specification is target for desktop users.
> I was wondering if that situation also applies to the server.
> On one hand, a server user may be more cautious about installing
> unsupported software. One the other hand, I've read and heard of lot of
> users stating that they had to enable universe anyway to install some
> software to make their server running.

My experience has been that there is a lot of software that isn't in
main that is widely used and well tested, and used in a lot of server
environments. Examples of this for our servers include amanda, puppet,
and nagios plugins, and the ISC dhcp software. I also noticed that
quite a few packages that I would have suspected were in main aren't,
such as apt-file and apt-mirror.

I think that most sysadmins are primarily guided more by their
knowledge of metadata about the packages, such as who the software is
written/maintained by, how widely it is used in other production
environments, etc. than they are about what repository a package is
classified under by Ubuntu. And since a lot of trusted and widely used
server software is not in universe, I suspect that relatively few
servers don't have any universe packages whatsoever on them (OTOH, I
would be surprised if there were many servers with multiverse

> So do you enable the universe repository on your server installs ?

I just checked some of our servers, and saw that we have quite a few
packages installed from universe. For others who are curious, you can
check how many such packages you have installed with something like

dpkg --get-selections | cut -f1 | xargs apt-cache policy | egrep
"$(lsb_release -c | cut -f2)/(uni|multi)verse" | wc -l

Evan Klitzke <evan at yelp.com>

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