[Aptitude-devel] Bug#778993: aptitude: No help for "l" command inside of the program; Ref man or User guide

Manuel A. Fernandez Montecelo manuel.montezelo at gmail.com
Sat Aug 29 00:49:41 UTC 2015

Control: forcemerge 514541 -1


2015-02-22 18:06 G. A. Craig Carey:
>Package: aptitude
>Version: 0.6.11-1+b1
>Severity: normal
>Dear Maintainer,
>The "Aptitude On-Line Help" page that appears when the "?" key is
> pressed, has the problem of not giving any information that
> suggests that there is a "l" key command. Now the "l" seems useful.
>Just a single extra line or more, produced by a print statement, is
> what this bug report is after.

Thanks for the suggestion, it was indeed missing.

I just added this information to the (Quick) Help, with pointers to the
man page and the User Manual (in HTML in aptitude-doc-${language}, also
accessible from "Help"->"User's Manual" within aptitude itself) for more
information about the search patterns.

>Also, there is a bad problem with the term
>    "Aptitude Reference Manual"
> in the man page. It is apparently vaguely identifying a file that
> can't be viewed or that does not exist.
>The situation seems to be that the "man page"'s
>        "Aptitude Reference Manual",
>    is the same as the,
>        "aptitude user's manual"                      (Title)
>        /usr/share/doc/aptitude/html/en/index.html    (Path).

With a couple of web search engines, typing "Aptitude Reference Manual"
points me to the correct document in the first links.

Also, in the bottom of the man page, it points exactly to the location
of the filesystem and the package that contains that file:


  apt-get(8), apt(8), /usr/share/doc/aptitude/html/<lang>/index.html
  from the package aptitude-doc-<lang>

(There are versions for <lang> english, french, russian...).

>Wish item: less chars in the "~ahold" string. With an aim of something that
> is more consistent and forgotten less easily. I shan't say "h" of "hold",
> since that is favouring an English word. Also a single "hold" level is
> perhaps something that can't survive 20 years or more.

~a is for action, can be "install", "hold", "remove", "upgrade" or

I cannot think of a better shortcut for "packages which match action
hold" than "~ahold".  "~h" is free, but "~i" and "~r" are taken for
example, and I don't think that we should create one-letters for all of
these actions (as you discovered later, there are many combinations
already "taken").

>Minor wish item: The same internal help page (of the '?' key) is lacking
> subtitles. The matter here is that designer was satisfied with using blank
> lines and I am assuming that a few extra lines more showing subtitles is
> making an improvement (not to the length, buit overall).
>There is a separation of the nature of key commands into:
> (a) Help lines about key commands that affect only 1 package.
> (b) Other similar help lines that are about more lines than that.

If the suggestion is to structure this more clearly in sub-sections, I
have wondered the same.  However, I am not sure because the longer and
more structured the document becomes, the less "Quick Help" it is, and
it approaches more to the other documentation (man page or User's
Manual); and basically if it is long there is less chance that users
read it fully.

Additionally, even simple modifications have consequences for documents
getting out of sync, translations, etc.

I think that at the moment we will leave it as it is, and will consider
deeper changes if we extensively review / revamp the contents in future

So, as a summary, the main request has just been implemented in request
to another bug report, the other suggestions are not actionable
immediately, so merging the bug reports.

Manuel A. Fernandez Montecelo <manuel.montezelo at gmail.com>

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