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Old 12-15-2015, 05:28 PM   #16
sgosnell
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And the standard non-LTS versions of Ubuntu are based on Debian Unstable...
 
Old 12-15-2015, 05:40 PM   #17
joe_2000
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sgosnell View Post
And the standard non-LTS versions of Ubuntu are based on Debian Unstable...
My wording was inaccurate. What I was referring to with "Debian - unstable based distro" were distros that have their apt sources.list point at the Debian unstable repos. Clearly those need a more careful look when upgrading than Ubuntu does.
 
Old 12-15-2015, 09:19 PM   #18
sgosnell
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I'm not sure that's the case. Ubuntu was pretty unstable when I used it, but I've long since abandoned it, so maybe it's better now. I would never rely on it, though. I run Sid on my desktop and have had no issues. Sid did break once a couple of years ago, but it was fixed in a couple of days. Testing, OTOH, breaks badly more often. But clearly if you're running a system where reliability is essential, you should not be running Unstable or Testing. Debian Stable is where I go for those.
 
Old 12-16-2015, 03:48 AM   #19
joe_2000
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sgosnell View Post
I'm not sure that's the case. Ubuntu was pretty unstable when I used it, but I've long since abandoned it, so maybe it's better now. I would never rely on it, though. I run Sid on my desktop and have had no issues. Sid did break once a couple of years ago, but it was fixed in a couple of days. Testing, OTOH, breaks badly more often. But clearly if you're running a system where reliability is essential, you should not be running Unstable or Testing. Debian Stable is where I go for those.
I'm running Mint (which points to Ubuntu repos) on all computers of my family. It updated flawlessly for years now.
 
Old 12-16-2015, 06:03 PM   #20
SaintDanBert
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NGIB View Post
My lightweight Buntu system has 1438 packages installed, many are just part of the base system. If you want total control, about all you can do is install a basic (no-x) net install system and add each package you want individually...
Agreed ...
Given the Linux/*nix tendency to use cute or cryptic names for software, for example alacarte, crdskin, freepats, grads, ... one needs some way to ask [highlight]What is {packagename} and why would I want to use it?]/highlight] for packages that they have not yet installed.

Let me ask my question in a different way. Is there some way to query the repositories or the internet about the details of a known {packagename} for packages that are not installed on the current workstation?
 
Old 12-16-2015, 06:16 PM   #21
NGIB
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Google is your friend, seriously. Type in a package name and read what comes up. BTW, alacarte is a menu editor that works very well with XFCE...
 
Old 12-16-2015, 06:18 PM   #22
SaintDanBert
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joe_2000 View Post
I'm running Mint (which points to Ubuntu repos) on all computers of my family. It updated flawlessly for years now.
I, too, have run Mint-something for many years with precious few update troubles. When they happen, it is usually a broken dependency surrounding changes in the libraries and other subordinate internal parts of the failing package. Typically, these are repaired quickly.

~~~ 0;-Dan
 
Old 12-17-2015, 04:48 PM   #23
sgosnell
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To query the repositories for packages not installed, use apt-cache search in a terminal, as in
Code:
apt-cache search packagename
That gives you very basic information about the package, installed or not.
Code:
apt-cache policy packagename
will tell you whether the package is installed, and if not, whether it's installable.
 
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Old 12-17-2015, 09:05 PM   #24
Fred Caro
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You could simulate an update to see if there might be problems, with:

Quote:
apt-get -s upgrade
It seems curlish to complain about lack info on packages/upgrades when other os's give you nothing by way of info.

fred.
 
Old 12-20-2015, 07:52 PM   #25
SaintDanBert
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Friends and colleagues, thanks to all who took the time to reply.
It seems that the following meets my original requirement:
Code:
prompt$  apt-cache show {packagename}
Joyeux Nol,
~~~ *<;-} Dan
 
  


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