Cannot re-install synaptic on Buster.

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Cannot re-install synaptic on Buster.

Kieran Smyth
Hi,

For reasons unknown to me, synaptic uninstalled itself about three weeks ago. I am using Buster on the desktop, with MATE as my desktop environment. 

When i open up a terminal and try to re-install it, i get the following- 

# apt update
Hit:1 http://ftp.us.debian.org/debian buster InRelease
Hit:2 http://ftp.us.debian.org/debian buster-updates InRelease
Hit:3 http://security.debian.org/debian-security buster/updates InRelease
Reading package lists... Done
Building dependency tree       
Reading state information... Done
All packages are up to date.

# apt install synaptic  
Reading package lists... Done
Building dependency tree       
Reading state information... Done
Package synaptic is not available, but is referred to by another package.
This may mean that the package is missing, has been obsoleted, or
is only available from another source

E: Package 'synaptic' has no installation candidate

/etc/apt/sources.list is the following-

deb http://ftp.us.debian.org/debian/ buster main contrib non-free
deb-src http://ftp.us.debian.org/debian/ buster main contrib non-free

deb http://ftp.us.debian.org/debian/ buster-updates main contrib non-free
deb-src http://ftp.us.debian.org/debian/ buster-updates main contrib non-free

deb http://security.debian.org/debian-security/ buster/updates main contrib non-free
deb-src http://security.debian.org/debian-security/ buster/updates main contrib non-free

I like using a GUI frontend to apt, and if anyone can help me get it back on my system i'd really appreciate it. 

Thank you in advance for any help that may be provided.

- Kieran
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Re: Cannot re-install synaptic on Buster.

Reco
        Hi.

On Mon, Apr 15, 2019 at 01:24:32AM -0400, Kieran Smyth wrote:
> For reasons unknown to me, synaptic uninstalled itself about three weeks
> ago. I am using Buster on the desktop, with MATE as my desktop environment.

Synaptic was removed from testing two weeks ago, see #818366.

> I like using a GUI frontend to apt, and if anyone can help me get it back
> on my system i'd really appreciate it.

You're not supposed to use synaptic in Wayland session anymore. Consider
using gnome-packagekit instead.

Reco

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Re: Cannot re-install synaptic on Buster.

tomas@tuxteam.de
On Mon, Apr 15, 2019 at 09:03:47AM +0300, Reco wrote:

> Hi.
>
> On Mon, Apr 15, 2019 at 01:24:32AM -0400, Kieran Smyth wrote:
> > For reasons unknown to me, synaptic uninstalled itself about three weeks
> > ago. I am using Buster on the desktop, with MATE as my desktop environment.
>
> Synaptic was removed from testing two weeks ago, see #818366.
>
> > I like using a GUI frontend to apt, and if anyone can help me get it back
> > on my system i'd really appreciate it.
>
> You're not supposed to use synaptic in Wayland session anymore. Consider
> using gnome-packagekit instead.
Or just ditch Wayland (/me runs for cover ;-)

Cheers
-- t

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Re: Cannot re-install synaptic on Buster.

Paul Sutton-2
In reply to this post by Reco


On 15/04/2019 07:03, Reco wrote:

> Hi.
>
> On Mon, Apr 15, 2019 at 01:24:32AM -0400, Kieran Smyth wrote:
>> For reasons unknown to me, synaptic uninstalled itself about three weeks
>> ago. I am using Buster on the desktop, with MATE as my desktop environment.
>
> Synaptic was removed from testing two weeks ago, see #818366.
>
>> I like using a GUI frontend to apt, and if anyone can help me get it back
>> on my system i'd really appreciate it.
>
> You're not supposed to use synaptic in Wayland session anymore. Consider
> using gnome-packagekit instead.
>
> Reco
>

Hi Reco,


Thanks for your reply, as, on a related note, this helps me with the
basic presentation that I an working on.  I was aware that synaptic is
now removed, but I wasn't aware what it it had been replaced with

I get info on what is in buster from this page

https://wiki.debian.org/NewInBuster

Would it be worth updating this page so others know to use
gnome-packagekit instead, even if this information is elsewhere.

Regards

Paul

--
Paul Sutton
http://www.zleap.net
https://www.linkedin.com/in/zleap/
gnupg : 7D6D B682 F351 8D08 1893  1E16 F086 5537 D066 302D

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Re: Cannot re-install synaptic on Buster.

Keith Bainbridge-2
In reply to this post by Kieran Smyth
Good afternoon All


I'm more intrigued that synaptic reportedly removed itself.


How is this possible, or did some other package force its removal?



Keith Bainbridge

[hidden email]
+61 (0)447 667 468
On 15/4/19 3:24 pm, Kieran Smyth wrote:
>
> For reasons unknown to me, synaptic uninstalled itself about three weeks
> ago. I am using Buster on the desktop, with MATE as my desktop environment.

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Re: Cannot re-install synaptic on Buster.

Reco
In reply to this post by tomas@tuxteam.de
        Hi.

On Mon, Apr 15, 2019 at 09:14:30AM +0200, [hidden email] wrote:

> On Mon, Apr 15, 2019 at 09:03:47AM +0300, Reco wrote:
> > On Mon, Apr 15, 2019 at 01:24:32AM -0400, Kieran Smyth wrote:
> > > For reasons unknown to me, synaptic uninstalled itself about three weeks
> > > ago. I am using Buster on the desktop, with MATE as my desktop environment.
> >
> > Synaptic was removed from testing two weeks ago, see #818366.
> >
> > > I like using a GUI frontend to apt, and if anyone can help me get it back
> > > on my system i'd really appreciate it.
> >
> > You're not supposed to use synaptic in Wayland session anymore. Consider
> > using gnome-packagekit instead.
>
> Or just ditch Wayland (/me runs for cover ;-)

A short-term solution at best, although I'll avoid Wayland in buster.
Tried the thing, did not like all two 'window managers' from the main
archive that come with the Wayland.

Reco

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Re: Cannot re-install synaptic on Buster.

Reco
In reply to this post by Paul Sutton-2
        Hi.

On Mon, Apr 15, 2019 at 08:18:20AM +0100, Paul Sutton wrote:
> Thanks for your reply, as, on a related note, this helps me with the
> basic presentation that I an working on.  I was aware that synaptic is
> now removed, but I wasn't aware what it it had been replaced with

Not 'replaced' per se. gnome-packagekit is not a new software - as far
as Debian concerned - it predates jessie. Its features are inferior to
synaptic, which is what one can expect from the GNOME software, so its
no wonder that its popularity was low in Debian. Until now, that is, as
gnome-packagekit seem to be the only viable alternative to synaptic
assuming the user will run a Wayland session.
And said session is the default with GNOME, as of buster.


> I get info on what is in buster from this page
> https://wiki.debian.org/NewInBuster

As I wrote, gnome-packagekit ain't new. I expect that [1] will be
updated sooner or later though.


> Would it be worth updating this page so others know to use
> gnome-packagekit instead, even if this information is elsewhere.

I suggest you to update [2]. After all, they made this page for a
reason, and it provides obsolete information as of buster.

Reco

[1] https://www.debian.org/doc/books
[2] https://wiki.debian.org/QuickPackageManagement

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Re: Cannot re-install synaptic on Buster.

tomas@tuxteam.de
In reply to this post by Reco
On Mon, Apr 15, 2019 at 10:42:19AM +0300, Reco wrote:
>
> On Mon, Apr 15, 2019 at 09:14:30AM +0200, [hidden email] wrote:

[...]

> > Or just ditch Wayland (/me runs for cover ;-)

This was admittedly a bit provocative -- no offense intended.

> A short-term solution at best, although I'll avoid Wayland in buster.

Why do you think it is a short term solution?

> Tried the thing, did not like all two 'window managers' from the main
> archive that come with the Wayland.

This is more or less my situation. After a detour through Gnome I
finally came back to fvwm, and glad I did.

I deeply dislike the Wayland approach and hope I die of old age
before I have to switch.

Cheers
-- t

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Re: Cannot re-install synaptic on Buster.

Brad Rogers
In reply to this post by Keith Bainbridge-2
On Mon, 15 Apr 2019 17:32:47 +1000
Keith Bainbridge <[hidden email]> wrote:

Hello Keith,

>I'm more intrigued that synaptic reportedly removed itself.
>How is this possible, or did some other package force its removal?

Removal occurred because of otherwise unresolvable conflicts. In this
case, with Wayland.  OP apparently didn't notice Synaptic was to be
removed, and proceeded with the upgrade.

--
 Regards  _
         / )           "The blindingly obvious is
        / _)rad        never immediately apparent"
I must be hallucinating, watching angels celebrating
There Must Be An Angel (Playing With My Heart) - Eurythmics

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Re: Cannot re-install synaptic on Buster.

Reco
In reply to this post by tomas@tuxteam.de
        Hi.

On Mon, Apr 15, 2019 at 09:56:04AM +0200, [hidden email] wrote:
> On Mon, Apr 15, 2019 at 10:42:19AM +0300, Reco wrote:
> >
> > On Mon, Apr 15, 2019 at 09:14:30AM +0200, [hidden email] wrote:
>
> [...]
>
> > > Or just ditch Wayland (/me runs for cover ;-)
>
> This was admittedly a bit provocative -- no offense intended.

None taken. I saw the smiley ☺.


> > A short-term solution at best, although I'll avoid Wayland in buster.
>
> Why do you think it is a short term solution?

Because GNOME. GNOME's upstream said their word loud and clear, and that
word is - 'thou shall use Wayland for it is our favorite toy now'.

A modern GNOME project is known for feature removal. There was no single
GNOME release since the 3.0 version which lacked "we've removed A and
we've removed your ability to do B, because reasons" in the changelog.

Therefore one can expect the removal of the ability to run GNOME with
plain X (it's possible for now), and in GNOME speak it's will be a
"feature".

Debian project, like the most distributions, ships GNOME as a
primary/default Desktop Envirionment. Therefore one can expect that this
GNOME's "feature"-to-be will be included in Debian sooner or later, and
once done the "feature" can affect other, seemingly unrelated packages.
A synaptic comes to mind here ☺.

Luckily for us, Debian stable users, we're promised a lack of behaviour
changes during the lifecycle of a stable release. And Debian keeps that
promise most of the time.


So, I'll keep using X in buster, as I stopped using GNOME long time ago
(etch was the testing, grass was greener etc).


> > Tried the thing, did not like all two 'window managers' from the main
> > archive that come with the Wayland.
>
> This is more or less my situation. After a detour through Gnome I
> finally came back to fvwm, and glad I did.

Ah, that's the thing. They give you mutter (it's a GNOME thing) and they
give you weston (a reference 'window manager').
Both lose in usability to my openbox setup.

Reco

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Re: Cannot re-install synaptic on Buster.

Rick Thomas-14
In reply to this post by Reco


> On Apr 14, 2019, at 11:03 PM, Reco <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> On Mon, Apr 15, 2019 at 01:24:32AM -0400, Kieran Smyth wrote:
>> For reasons unknown to me, synaptic uninstalled itself about three weeks
>> ago. I am using Buster on the desktop, with MATE as my desktop environment.
>
> Synaptic was removed from testing two weeks ago, see #818366.
>
>> I like using a GUI frontend to apt, and if anyone can help me get it back
>> on my system i'd really appreciate it.
>
> You're not supposed to use synaptic in Wayland session anymore. Consider
> using gnome-packagekit instead.

Or try muon.  (apt install muon)

I don’t know if it is fully wayland compatible, or if it’s just not well enough known to show up on the remover’s radar screens.

In any case, I find it’s a good substitute for synaptic.

Rick
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Re: Cannot re-install synaptic on Buster.

Paul Sutton-2
In reply to this post by Reco


On 15/04/2019 09:15, Reco wrote:

> Hi.
>
> On Mon, Apr 15, 2019 at 09:56:04AM +0200, [hidden email] wrote:
>> On Mon, Apr 15, 2019 at 10:42:19AM +0300, Reco wrote:
>>>
>>> On Mon, Apr 15, 2019 at 09:14:30AM +0200, [hidden email] wrote:
>>
>> [...]
>>
>>>> Or just ditch Wayland (/me runs for cover ;-)
>>
>> This was admittedly a bit provocative -- no offense intended.
>
> None taken. I saw the smiley ☺.
>
>
>>> A short-term solution at best, although I'll avoid Wayland in buster.
>>
>> Why do you think it is a short term solution?
>
> Because GNOME. GNOME's upstream said their word loud and clear, and that
> word is - 'thou shall use Wayland for it is our favorite toy now'.
>
> A modern GNOME project is known for feature removal. There was no single
> GNOME release since the 3.0 version which lacked "we've removed A and
> we've removed your ability to do B, because reasons" in the changelog.
>
> Therefore one can expect the removal of the ability to run GNOME with
> plain X (it's possible for now), and in GNOME speak it's will be a
> "feature".
>
> Debian project, like the most distributions, ships GNOME as a
> primary/default Desktop Envirionment. Therefore one can expect that this
> GNOME's "feature"-to-be will be included in Debian sooner or later, and
> once done the "feature" can affect other, seemingly unrelated packages.
> A synaptic comes to mind here ☺.
>
> Luckily for us, Debian stable users, we're promised a lack of behaviour
> changes during the lifecycle of a stable release. And Debian keeps that
> promise most of the time.
>
>
> So, I'll keep using X in buster, as I stopped using GNOME long time ago
> (etch was the testing, grass was greener etc).
>
>
>>> Tried the thing, did not like all two 'window managers' from the main
>>> archive that come with the Wayland.
>>
>> This is more or less my situation. After a detour through Gnome I
>> finally came back to fvwm, and glad I did.
>
> Ah, that's the thing. They give you mutter (it's a GNOME thing) and they
> give you weston (a reference 'window manager').
> Both lose in usability to my openbox setup.
>
> Reco
>

Hi

I prefer and will stick to lxde,  however with this presentation it is
probably better to stick to the default options,  which I am guesing
will be wayland + gnome 3.  Of course I want to also make it simple
enough so people can easily edit it for their needs.

If I select desktop environment + Lxde,  I would assume that the system
will go back to X + lxde.

Paul

--
Paul Sutton
http://www.zleap.net
https://www.linkedin.com/in/zleap/
gnupg : 7D6D B682 F351 8D08 1893  1E16 F086 5537 D066 302D

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Re: Cannot re-install synaptic on Buster.

Dominic Knight
In reply to this post by Kieran Smyth
On Mon, 2019-04-15 at 01:24 -0400, Kieran Smyth wrote:

> Hi,
>
> For reasons unknown to me, synaptic uninstalled itself about three
> weeks ago. I am using Buster on the desktop, with MATE as my desktop
> environment.
>
> When i open up a terminal and try to re-install it, i get the
> following-
> SNIP
>
> I like using a GUI frontend to apt, and if anyone can help me get it
> back on my system i'd really appreciate it.
>
> Thank you in advance for any help that may be provided.
>
> - Kieran

The good news is that someone has filed a patch that works around these
issues with Wayland. So it should be back for other GUI users with a
failure message for Wayland users once it is passed through
experimental (in time for Buster release).



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Re: Cannot re-install synaptic on Buster.

Keith Bainbridge-3
In reply to this post by Brad Rogers

On 15/4/19 6:12 pm, Brad Rogers wrote:

> On Mon, 15 Apr 2019 17:32:47 +1000
> Keith Bainbridge <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> Hello Keith,
>
>> I'm more intrigued that synaptic reportedly removed itself.
>> How is this possible, or did some other package force its removal?
>
> Removal occurred because of otherwise unresolvable conflicts. In this
> case, with Wayland.  OP apparently didn't notice Synaptic was to be
> removed, and proceeded with the upgrade.
>


So if I don't install Wayland, I should not loose synaptic - for those
odd times I need it to help me find something?

And the manual installation I did on my vbox test machine should be OK?


Thanks



Keith Bainbridge

[hidden email]
+61 (0)447 667 468

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Re: Cannot re-install synaptic on Buster.

Brad Rogers
On Mon, 15 Apr 2019 20:12:34 +1000
Keith Bainbridge <[hidden email]> wrote:

Hello Keith,

>So if I don't install Wayland, I should not loose synaptic - for those
>odd times I need it to help me find something?

That /would/ have been the case, yes.  Not so now; Synaptic is no longer
available in testing.  You can, of course, d/l synaptic (the version
in sid is currently the same as the one that's been deleted from
testing) and install using dpkg.

If you're happy to use snapshot.debian, you can re-install Synaptic that
way.  Be sure to disable the relevant repo entry as soon as you've
performed the installation.

>And the manual installation I did on my vbox test machine should be OK?

That I have no idea about.  Sorry.

--
 Regards  _
         / )           "The blindingly obvious is
        / _)rad        never immediately apparent"
No you can't hop into my shower
Leave Me Alone (I'm Lonely) - P!nk

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Re: Cannot re-install synaptic on Buster.

tomas@tuxteam.de
In reply to this post by Reco
On Mon, Apr 15, 2019 at 11:15:48AM +0300, Reco wrote:
> Hi.
>
> On Mon, Apr 15, 2019 at 09:56:04AM +0200, [hidden email] wrote:
> > On Mon, Apr 15, 2019 at 10:42:19AM +0300, Reco wrote:
> > >
> > > On Mon, Apr 15, 2019 at 09:14:30AM +0200, [hidden email] wrote:

[...]

> > This was admittedly a bit provocative -- no offense intended.
>
> None taken. I saw the smiley ☺.

Phew :)

> > > A short-term solution at best, although I'll avoid Wayland in buster.
> >
> > Why do you think it is a short term solution?
>
> Because GNOME. GNOME's upstream said their word loud and clear, and that
> word is - 'thou shall use Wayland for it is our favorite toy now'.

Yes, for GNOME users that's right. And GNOME is Debian's default DE.
But not the only one, and you don't even have to have a DE (I haven't
one, for example).

> A modern GNOME project is known for feature removal [...]

I don't like myself many of the choices GNOME has taken. Nevertheless,
its intention is to make user's lives more enjoyable [1], and that
is commendable. For "my" end users (i.e. those for whom I play
"local friendly hacker") I tend to help them taking their choices.
Some are fine with modern GNOME (that means I have to have some
working knowledge of that), others run away, screaming in horror
(they usually settle on something like Mate or XFCE).

Myself? As I already said: to me, a desktop environment is an
abomination. Give me a "classical" window manager and I'm your
guest.

As elsewhere, I'd say: diversity rocks!

> Luckily for us, Debian stable users, we're promised a lack of behaviour
> changes during the lifecycle of a stable release. And Debian keeps that
> promise most of the time [...]

You make it sound as if there were some cabal behind Debian. I think
Debian (folks) will be happy to keep alternatives viable as long as
there is someone around willing to do the legwork.

Watch again systemd: while the default in Debian, it is perfectly
possible to install a Debian system without it (mine is SysV, and
I do play around with installers for raspi). And quite a bit of
the necessary legwork (SysV init scripts for packages et al) *is
being done by the respective package maintainers, many of whom may
be systemd proponents... just because they think your choice is
important!*

For me, that's awesome. That is how civilisation works. That's why
I tend to go berserk every time I see mud being slung at them.
We might disagree, but we shouldn't sling mud at people giving us
software for free. Discussion, Bug reports, patches, all fine.
But no mud.

> > This is more or less my situation. After a detour through Gnome I
> > finally came back to fvwm, and glad I did.
>
> Ah, that's the thing. They give you mutter (it's a GNOME thing) and they
> give you weston (a reference 'window manager').
> Both lose in usability to my openbox setup.

Hey. It's free software. Shouldn't we be rather saying "we give
ourselves [2] this and that?" Who's "they" anyway

Now let me step down from my soapbox.

Cheers

[1] I'm applying some amount of Hanlon's razor here
[2] In the reciprocal, not in the egocentric sense

-- t

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Re: Cannot re-install synaptic on Buster.

Reco
        Hi.

On Mon, Apr 15, 2019 at 01:31:04PM +0200, [hidden email] wrote:

> > > > A short-term solution at best, although I'll avoid Wayland in buster.
> > >
> > > Why do you think it is a short term solution?
> >
> > Because GNOME. GNOME's upstream said their word loud and clear, and that
> > word is - 'thou shall use Wayland for it is our favorite toy now'.
>
> Yes, for GNOME users that's right. And GNOME is Debian's default DE.
> But not the only one, and you don't even have to have a DE (I haven't
> one, for example).

There are users that are installing Debian from the first install DVD.
Some of those come to this maillist from time to time.
There are users that are installing Debian from the Live DVD.
These are also coming to this maillist.

Never underestimate the power of the defaults. If they give it by
default - people will use it even given the alternatives.


> > Luckily for us, Debian stable users, we're promised a lack of behaviour
> > changes during the lifecycle of a stable release. And Debian keeps that
> > promise most of the time [...]
>
> You make it sound as if there were some cabal behind Debian.

One can call them that. But officially they are called Debian
Developers ☺. I meant nothing sinister, I assure you.

'Most of the time' referenced certain packages (samba, wireshark for
instance), which versions was changed during stretch's lifecycle
because backporting security fixes was not feasible.
Oh, and *browsers*. Let's not forget *those*.


> I think Debian (folks) will be happy to keep alternatives viable as
> long as there is someone around willing to do the legwork.

#818366 convinces me otherwise.


> Watch again systemd: while the default in Debian, it is perfectly
> possible to install a Debian system without it (mine is SysV, and
> I do play around with installers for raspi). And quite a bit of
> the necessary legwork (SysV init scripts for packages et al) *is
> being done by the respective package maintainers, many of whom may
> be systemd proponents... just because they think your choice is
> important!*

I'm not going to touch *this*. We have enough threads about s*****d here
already. A good example nevertheless.


> > > This is more or less my situation. After a detour through Gnome I
> > > finally came back to fvwm, and glad I did.
> >
> > Ah, that's the thing. They give you mutter (it's a GNOME thing) and they
> > give you weston (a reference 'window manager').
> > Both lose in usability to my openbox setup.
>
> Hey. It's free software. Shouldn't we be rather saying "we give
> ourselves [2] this and that?" Who's "they" anyway

I'm not a part of Debian project, I'm just a user.
While I can build a package or two if a need arises, I'm too lazy to
play this "maintainer for myself" role too often.
So I (the user) use the packages they (maintainers) give me.

And I use "they" as a way of referring the group of people I'm not
acquainted with, or whose identities are not relevant to the question
discussed. Fits here, IMO.

Reco

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Re: Cannot re-install synaptic on Buster.

tomas@tuxteam.de
On Mon, Apr 15, 2019 at 02:52:37PM +0300, Reco wrote:

[...]

> I'm not a part of Debian project, I'm just a user.

Then you are part, somehow. The one thing I appreciate about the
Debian project is precisely that it doesn't treat their users as
a merchandise (something less and less common these days).

> While I can build a package or two if a need arises, I'm too lazy to
> play this "maintainer for myself" role too often.
> So I (the user) use the packages they (maintainers) give me.

Yup. But they're listening. And they tend to be nice and civilised
people.

> And I use "they" as a way of referring the group of people I'm not
> acquainted with, or whose identities are not relevant to the question
> discussed. Fits here, IMO.

Do you a favour. Next time there's a Debconf near you, do attend (if
at all possible). It's totally worth it, and perhaps, after that,
"their" identities will be relevant [1].

Cheers

[1] I understand that you used this "identities aren't relevant" in
   a slightly different sense, by your restriction of context "to the
   question discussed". But I took the freedom to misinterpret you
   (just a little bit) to make the point, that yes, those Debian
   developers are people, each one which their character, each one
   different, but whom I trust _a lot_ (the functioning of my work
   computer depends on many of them, and they've let me down very
   rarely), and whom, in a somewhat abstract way I love, because
   they do their stuff with dedication, and often for no pay.
   So at some undefined meta level it is relevant again :-)

-- t

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Re: Cannot re-install synaptic on Buster.

Greg Wooledge
In reply to this post by Paul Sutton-2
On Mon, Apr 15, 2019 at 08:18:20AM +0100, Paul Sutton wrote:
> I get info on what is in buster from this page
>
> https://wiki.debian.org/NewInBuster
>
> Would it be worth updating this page so others know to use
> gnome-packagekit instead, even if this information is elsewhere.

As end users, we don't know how the synaptic situation is going to play
out.  It may be removed permanently, or the bug that caused its removal
may be fixed/closed in any of several possible ways.

So for us, it's wait and see.

Recommending a vastly inferior GNOME substitute isn't what I consider a
proper, permanent solution.  But it's a wiki, and you have just as much
right to edit it as I do, if you think the advice will be useful.

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Re: Cannot re-install synaptic on Buster.

Jonathan Dowland
In reply to this post by Reco
On Mon, Apr 15, 2019 at 11:15:48AM +0300, Reco wrote:
>Debian project, like the most distributions, ships GNOME as a
>primary/default Desktop Envirionment. Therefore one can expect that this
>GNOME's "feature"-to-be will be included in Debian sooner or later, and
>once done the "feature" can affect other, seemingly unrelated packages.
>A synaptic comes to mind here ☺.

The decision to ship GNOME as the default desktop is regularly revisited: And
if a future GNOME release dropped X support altogether, you can be sure that
would be a factor in the re-evaluation that would follow.

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