On zondag 8 april 2018 02:07:45 CEST Lisandro Damián Nicanor Pérez Meyer 
> Beware when you upgrade! 

This is a reminder that people should not use 'apt/aptitude full-upgrade' or 
'apt-get dist-upgrade'. You don't need it in 99.9% of the cases.
The 'apt upgrade' and 'aptitude safe-upgrade' commands contain sanity checks 
which prevent you from breaking packages (dependencies).

If you do 'aptitude safe-upgrade' and it then says 'and 83 not upgraded', that 
is fine. Usually it's 0 or equal to the number of packages I've put on hold 
myself, but especially during Qt transitions it tend to get (this) high.

The right response is to wait.

It can take a few days, but it'll sort itself out over time.
If I think it's taking too long (usually a week, but I give Qt transitions a 
bit more time), I do 'aptitude full-upgrade -s'. The '-s' stands for simulate 
and it will tell you what it will do without actually doing it (you can do 
this as normal user too).
It will then tell you which packages will break with a full-upgrade and why.

In most cases you can then conclude that apt/aptitude was indeed smart and you 
should just wait a bit more.

There is another case and that is when it needs to remove a package which is 
marked as *manually* installed. With 'aptitude safe-upgrade' it has no problem 
removing packages marked as automatically installed (as dependency from 
another package). But it will not touch packages marked as manually installed 
with the logic "Apparently you have your reasons and I'll respect that".

It could be that a package is marked as manually installed, but being marked 
as automatically installed would be more appropriate. Library packages in most 
cases should be marked as automatically installed for example.
You can change the state with 'aptitude markauto <pkg>' or 'aptitude 
unmarkauto <pkg>' and thereby improve the state of your package manager.

With 'aptitude search '~i!?automatic' or '~i!~M' (they do exactly the same) 
you'll get a list of installed packages which are marked as manually (=not 
automatic) installed.
See 'Search term reference' on https://aptitude.alioth.debian.org/doc/en/
ch02s04s05.html or in your preferred aptitude-doc package for all kinds of 
search terms you can use to tailor your search result.
You often can just place those next to each other ('~i' + '!~M' above) but if 
you're not getting results you expected, try combining them with '?
narrow(term1, term2)' like this:
aptitude search '?narrow(~i!~M~slibs,~n^lib)'


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