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Group packages by origin in aptitude //at 00:06 //by abe

from the reasons-for-loving-debian dept.

I always wondered how others recognise non-Debian packages in the aptitude package tree. I also missed the additional priority level in the hierachy well-known from good old dselect.

For the last one, I quickly found out that you can set the priority as subsection — it’s straight forward after you’ve read the documentation: Just add ,priority at the end of the default grouping method for package views under “Options → UI Options” in the aptitude menu.

Getting the origin as given in the Release file of the repository a package originates from is a little bit more difficult. You need to use the pattern() group function with the appropriate search pattern: pattern(~O)

Since already the default default grouping method for package views doesn’t fit into the dialog, I nowadays just edit /etc/apt/apt.conf directly for changes on aptitude’s default grouping method for package views. It now looks like this on several of my machines:

Aptitude::UI {
  Default-Grouping "filter(missing),status,section(subdir,passthrough),pattern(~O),section(topdir),priority";

In aptitude this looks like this:

  --- text - Text processing utilities
  --\ utils - Various system utilities
    --- Debian
    --- Mowgli
  --\ web - Web browsers, servers, proxies, and other tools
    --- Debian
    --- Opera Software ASA
  --\ x11 - The X window system and related software
    --\ Debian
      --- contrib - Programs which depend on software not in Debian
      --\ main - The main Debian archive
        --- Priority optional
        --- Priority extra
      --- non-free - Programs which are not free software
    --- Mowgli

Unfortunately this doesn’t work with all non-Debian repositories since a few repository maintainer, e.g. those from Emdebian, arrogate to just keep “Debian” as their packages’ origin. This could be solved, if there’s a possibility to group by e.g. repository URL (host and/or path).

Another problem I haven’t solved yet is that grouping by origin does neither work with locally created nor virtual packages nor tasks — probably since all of them lack an origin. Those branches are just empty or don’t even show up anymore with this configuration. I probably have to dig a little bit more in the aptitude documentation to resolve this.

Now playing: E-Rotic — Max don’t have sex with your ex

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Hackergotchi of Axel Beckert


Debian GNU/Linux is my favourite Linux distribution, being stable, flexible, consistent and having a great community. Although I'm not the biggest bug report writer, I try to contribute by staffing the Debian booth at events, carrying the necessary hardware there or even organising the whole booth.

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