aptitude vs. apt-get

Seth Hasani sepheebear at gmail.com
Wed Oct 5 20:06:34 UTC 2005

<quote who="Michael R. Head" on Wed, Oct 05, 2005 at 03:35:17PM EDT>

> On Wed, 2005-10-05 at 14:58 -0400, Will H. Backman wrote:
> > Is it true that aptitude should be used instead of apt-get?
> I've never personally used aptitude in 1 year of ubuntu use and 8 years
> of debian use, though it seems like it has some nice benefits.

The thing about using aptitude instead of apt-get is that aptitude "tracks"
dependencies in such a way that it will uninstall un-needed dependencies for
you after you uninstall the app needing them. For example, lets say you
install something a package "myapp" that needs the library package "mylib".
Both commands "apt-get install myapp" and "aptitude myapp" will bring in the
dependency mylib automagically.

But when you want to remove myapp and you run "apt-get remove myapp", only
myapp will be removed and mylib will still be sitting on your hard drive
taking up space without a purpose. Whereas, if you installed it with
aptitude in the first place and you run "aptitude remove myapp", both myapp
and mylib will be uninstall because aptitude is smart enough to *know* mylib
is no longer needed.


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