Installing .deb packages with apt-get

Dotan Cohen dotancohen at
Thu May 17 19:00:21 UTC 2007

On 17/05/07, Larry Shields <larry at> wrote:
> > Thanks, Larry. I know how to install/remove packages with apt-get, but
> > I'd like to review it's operations before it does anything. Especially
> > in the case of dependancies.
> >
> >
> Ok but from the way it sounded was like you did not know how to use apt...
> The only way that I can think of if you want to know the dependencies,
> is to use synaptic, look for the program you want, then right click on
> it...Click on properties, it then will show all of it's dependencies...
> But it will not show you were it is going to be installed, it will how
> ever if it is installed...Most all will be in the /usr/bin  /usr/share
> files areas...

I don't care where, but I do care what. I suppose that I'm still
paranoid from all the times that yum has screwed up because I did not
double check what it was doing.

> >> Also you can find where a package is by using the command  'locate
> >> <packagename>'...
> >>
> >
> > Of course. But that's not the detail I'm interested in. I want to know
> > what will be updated and to what version numbers. Not _after_ the
> > operation, but before.
> >
> >
> Synaptic will show you the version numbers prior to installing, by
> looking at the properties again...

I'm not about to switch to a gui. While I like graphical applications
for everyday work, I do not like configuration guis. I feel that they
add a magic layer between what I want and what they do. I don't like

> > I'm not talking about trying new packages. I want to know what apt-get
> > will do before it commits. This is a trivial feature and it's present
> > in other package managers. Hell, even Windows Update lets you know
> > what it's about to do and gives the user veto option. I find it
> > difficult to believe that apt-get forces one to do a simulated install
> > as the only means of discovering what it intends to do. Is there
> > really no interactive option?
> >
> >
> As far as I know apt doesn't tell you what it is going to do before it
> commits, maybe someone else can answer that question...

I sure wish that it would. In the meantime I'm doing simulated installs first.

Dotan Cohen

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