are backports safe?

Toby Kelsey toby_kelsey at
Mon Jan 23 10:11:41 UTC 2006

Zunbeltz Izaola wrote:
> Hi,
> Is safe to install programs from backports? I don't know if there are
> any problem when the distributition is upgraded or similar.
> Thanks 
> Zunbeltz

Backported packages should have intermediate version numbers such that the next release will upgrade them to the supported version for the new release.
The only exception should be if that package is no longer included, but then dist-upgrade will remove it anyway.
If when you update your sources.list file to have Dapper sources you also remove Breezy backports, then any marooned backported packages will show up in Synaptic as local/obsolete.

They are not as 'safe' in the sense that the backport version will not have undergone the same level of testing as a release version and so may be more buggy.  They are usually OK but if in doubt,
stick to the release version.


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