[Aptitude-devel] why does not aptitude purge rather than just remove packages.

shirish शिरीष shirishag75 at gmail.com
Wed Feb 22 14:18:28 UTC 2012

in-line :-

2012/2/22 Daniel Hartwig <mandyke at gmail.com>:
> Hello

Hello Daniel,
        Thank you for answering.

> Purging packages is a dangerous operation.  This is why it is not done
> by default.
> For everyday activity there is no practical difference between a
> purged package and one which is only removed -- a few files and such
> remain on the system but you will not notice.

 would $dpkg -L $deleted-package-name

show the files that are present ? I would test them the next time
updating removes some files (old libraries which are being replaced by
newer libraries and so on and so forth)
>> The question came to me as I was trawling through the wiki and came
>> across http://dsa.debian.org/howto/upgrade-to-squeeze/ .


> You can use aptitude to get a similar list:
> $ aptitude search ?config-files

thank you, that is much easier/nicer.

> Definately!
> When a package is *removed* it leaves any configuration and log files
> still on the system.  These files may contain data that is useful to
> the user and could be used again if the package was reinstalled --
> such as customizations to a configuration file.
> If a package is *purged*, those conf. and log files are also removed,
> which is the data loss referred to in the warning.

ah... ok, that I had seen.

> To purge items, both Aptitude::Delete-Unused and Aptitude::Purge-Unused
> need to be true.  Delete-Unused is true by default, so you only need
> to set Purge-Unused.
> You can specify this option on the command line or in the apt.conf file.
> Note that the format differs between them.  See the apt.conf man page
> for the file format.
> -- apt.conf:
> Aptitude::Purge-Unused "true";

Thank you for the info.

> See apt.conf man page for details on the file format.

right will do that.

> Keep in mind that this is one of the most dangerous options you can
> give to aptitude, which is saying a lot.


>> I did have a look at /usr/share/aptitude/aptitude-defaults and
>> ~/.aptitude/config is empty.
> You do not want to change *any* files in /usr/share.

ah ok.

> ~/.aptitude/config is not the best place to set configuration, as
> the curses interface has a habit of mangling it when you change
> preferences (a long-running saga :-/)

ok... didn't know that.

> So the best place to set these options is in /etc/apt/apt.conf

Thank you again for clearing that up.

> Regards

          Shirish Agarwal  शिरीष अग्रवाल
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