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Ah, I understand. I've only ever used aptitude on testing. Perhaps that may explain the difference in our experiences.
Yes I switched my squeeze installation to testing & am going to allow it to upgrade to the next testing, although I have another installation that was installed as wheezy which will remain wheezy until the next stable comes along.
it seems you switched one release too late. Debian has recommended apt-get over aptitude for non-interactive commandline package management since the release of squeeze. See:
Yes I guess I did, but really was into aptitude & still am,as it doesn't try to autoremove my whole desktop which has happened before. Although I was able to just do a simple "aptitude install gnome"
Also I really only got started with linux at squeeze, never had a working lenny system. Lets just say I tried getting lenny running, with no knowledge at all what I was doing.
apt-get is recommended for dist-upgrade, but nothing else. The reason apt-get is recommended over aptitude in this scenario is because when upgrading from one release to the next, a "sledge hammer" approach is often needed. aptitude's dependency resolver is just too advanced (too fussy) in such cases.
Personally I prefer aptitude "non-interactive" mode above all else. It's horses for courses.
The Debian package management system has a rich history and many choices for the front end user program and back end archive access method to be used. Currently, we recommend the following.
- apt-get(8) for all commandline operations, including package installation and removal, and dist-upgrades.
- aptitude(8) for an interactive text interface to manage the installed packages and to search the available packages.
- update-manager(8) for keeping your system up-to-date if you're running the default GNOME desktop.
Sure, but that's not aptitude specific*, apt-get also has the -t option:
Originally Posted by apt-get(8)
-t, --target-release, --default-release
This option controls the default input to the policy
engine; it creates a default pin at priority 990 using the
specified release string. This overrides the general
settings in /etc/apt/preferences. Specifically pinned
packages are not affected by the value of this option. In
short, this option lets you have simple control over which
distribution packages will be retrieved from. Some common
examples might be -t '2.1*', -t unstable or -t sid.
Configuration Item: APT::Default-Release; see also the
apt_preferences(5) manual page.
* Assuming the '.deb' was something your fingers typed without input from your brain ;-)
I think this thread is stuck in "Dependency Resolution loop" & the original question has a few answers but may have not been resolved for the user.
1.Does it generally cause any problems if you want to keep the newest version of a particular piece of software installed on debian stable?
This is possibly true for 1 & 2:
If you must have a newer version, upgrading to Testing is an infinitely better idea than adding Sid or Testing packages to Stable. If you do not want to upgrade, but a package is not in backports, you could build it from source. I shall not try to give any specific advice, since I have never tried it. (I have theoretical knowledge, but no practical experience.)
2.I've read somewhere that using a sid package on debian stable is not a good idea. What about just installing the software manually?
3.If you want to do this is it just a better idea to "upgrade" your distro from stable to testing, even if it was a production server?
Some will say no, but testing will be stable soon & you will have to upgrade or stick with old stable.
4.I forgot to add that there are no backports for this package.
You never said what the package is.
I must apologize to the OP for getting this thread off-topic.