HOWTO: Installing Newer Apps on Etch

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HOWTO: Installing Newer Apps on Etch

Postby Lou » 2007-05-27 15:14

WARNING: Please read the whole thread BEFORE attempting to follow the indications in this howto.

Lou - 28 May 2007

I am using Etch with Ratpoison 1.4.0 and IceWM, i wanted to have the
latest version for Ratpoison (1.4.1) but Lenny didn't have it, only Sid
had it. Dist-upgrading to Sid for just one application was not worth it
for me.

I knew there was "pinning" but it gives me a headache, i knew i had
seen another way somewhere else but i couldn't remember. I went to
check the APT-HOWTO.

APT-HOWTO
http://www.us.debian.org/doc/manuals/ap ... ex.en.html

Sure enough, there it was:

Section 3.8 How to keep a mixed system

I switched to IceWM and deleted Ratpoison:

$ sudo dpkg -P ratpoison


1. I edited the file /etc/apt/apt.conf and left it looking like this:

$ sudo jpico /etc/apt/apt.conf

APT::Default-Release "stable";

saved and exited

2. Went to my /etc/apt/sources.list and left it looking like this:

$ sudo jpico /etc/apt/sources.list

deb http://ftp.us.debian.org/debian/ unstable main non-free contrib
#deb-src http://ftp.us.debian.org/debian/ stable main non-free contrib
#deb http://security.debian.org/ stable/updates main contrib non-free

As you can see i changed the first line to 'unstable' and commented the
other two (no security in Sid and no sources necessary).

saved/exited from the editor

3. Updated and installed Ratpoison:

$ sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get -t unstable install ratpoison artwiz-cursor

afterwards, i updated the database:

$ sudo updatedb

4. Changed the the sources.list back to the original form,

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

saved/exited

$ sudo apt-get update

updated the system and voilá!
checked the version:

luigi@debian:~$ ratpoison -v
ratpoison 1.4.1 (built Apr 19 2007 20:41:01)
Copyright (C) 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006 Shawn Betts


Lou
May 26 2007
Last edited by Lou on 2007-05-28 14:05, edited 2 times in total.
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Postby chrismortimore » 2007-05-27 15:19

That could potentially drag in a lot of unwanted dependencies from unstable. What I would be inclined to try first is adding this to sources.list:
Code: Select all
deb-src ftp://ftp.us.debian.org/debian/ unstable main non-free contrib
And running "apt-get source ratpoison" and see if the package builds against Etch first. Most of the time, it will.
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Postby plb » 2007-05-27 15:20

nice, I usually just setup a personal bin directory in my ~ and build from source which works out well for me.
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Postby Lou » 2007-05-27 16:04

chrismortimore wrote:That could potentially drag in a lot of unwanted dependencies from unstable [...]


It asked me if i wanted to install a couple of deps, i said Yes.
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Postby rickh » 2007-05-27 16:05

Once you did this:
$ sudo jpico /etc/apt/apt.conf
APT::Default-Release "stable";
saved and exited


You didn't need this:
$ sudo jpico /etc/apt/sources.list
deb http://ftp.us.debian.org/debian/ unstable main non-free contrib
#deb-src http://ftp.us.debian.org/debian/ stable main non-free contrib
#deb http://security.debian.org/ stable/updates main contrib non-free

************
With a sources.list like this:
Code: Select all
deb http://ftp.us.debian.org/debian/ unstable main contrib non-free
deb http://ftp.us.debian.org/debian/ testing main contrib non-free
deb http://ftp.us.debian.org/debian/ experimental main contrib non-free
deb http://security.debian.org/ testing/updates main contrib

...and an apt.conf file like this:
Code: Select all
APT::Default-Release "testing";

...upgrades will only come from Testing unless you use the "-t <otherbranch>" option.

Occasionally, you will be offered a dependency from another branch if the application in your "Default-Release" is broken.
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Postby Lou » 2007-05-27 16:14

richh, the thing is: rp 1.4.1 and artwiz-cursor exists only in Sid, not in Testing, and i wanted to keep Etch with a couple of apps from Sid (later on i got icewm 1.2.30 from Sid too). Maybe i'm dense and not getting your point :lol:
Last edited by Lou on 2007-05-27 16:16, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby chrismortimore » 2007-05-27 16:15

Lou wrote:Maybe i'm dense and not getting your point :lol:
As long as you have "APT::Default-release "stable";" in your /etc/apt/apt.conf, you can leave the unstable repos in your sources.list without worry.
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Postby Lou » 2007-05-27 16:21

chrismortimore wrote:
Lou wrote:Maybe i'm dense and not getting your point :lol:
As long as you have "APT::Default-release "stable";" in your /etc/apt/apt.conf, you can leave the unstable repos in your sources.list without worry.


Ahh, why would i want to do that? Why not go back to 'stable' and minimize the potential tsunami? If i go back and put my sources.list to 'stable', won't it make it simpler and safer? Or is it all redundant, in the sense that it's the same? Or from then on, will i be installing everything from Sid, and if so, i might as well do a 'dist-upgrade' to Sid and live with it?
Last edited by Lou on 2007-05-27 16:22, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby rickh » 2007-05-27 16:21

Think about it a little bit. The way mine is set up, "aptitude search" will show applications from Testing, Unstable, and Experimental; but "aptitude install artwiz-cursor" will fail because apt.conf sets Testing as the default. To get artwiz-cursor, I would have to use: "aptitude install -t unstable artwiz-cursor"
Last edited by rickh on 2007-05-27 19:12, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby chrismortimore » 2007-05-27 16:27

Lou wrote:minimize the potential tsunami?
You're worried about a potential tsunami, and yet you're quite happy to pull in programs and all of it's dependencies from unstable on a stable system? That's fine now, but a year down the line (or even a few months), unstable and stable will be so different that it probably will upgrade half of the system.
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Postby Lou » 2007-05-27 16:29

rickh:

Ah...gotcha!

And yet, eventhough, you're correct, i'm not going to do it that way, because of my own mind limitations :oops: that's why i don't use 'pinning' i can't remember jackcrap :roll:

Thanks rickh, for getting me out of this abyss of darkness in which i dwell :D
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Postby Lou » 2007-05-27 16:35

chrismortimore wrote:
Lou wrote:minimize the potential tsunami?
You're worried about a potential tsunami, and yet you're quite happy to pull in programs and all of it's dependencies from unstable on a stable system? That's fine now, but a year down the line (or even a few months), unstable and stable will be so different that it probably will upgrade half of the system.


In the APT-HOWTO there is a section that states:

*******************************

3.9 How to upgrade packages from specific versions of Debian

"apt-show-versions provides a safe way for users of mixed distributions to upgrade their systems without getting more of the less-stable distribution than they had in mind. For instance, it is possible to upgrade just your unstable packages by running after having installed the apt-show-versions package:
# apt-get install `apt-show-versions -u -b | grep unstable | cut -d ' ' -f 1`

********************************

Will this solve the scenario you're painting or not?
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Postby rickh » 2007-05-27 19:15

I said:
but "aptitude install artwiz-cursor" will fail because apt.conf sets Testing as the default. To get artwiz-cursor, I would have to use: "aptitude install -t unstable artwiz-cursor"

...but that is not true. I've been doing some experimentation, and I was certainly overconfident about how securely such a setup would lock in Testing. After more experimenting, I'll make some clarifications.
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Postby Lavene » 2007-05-27 19:30

Lou wrote:Ahh, why would i want to do that? Why not go back to 'stable' and minimize the potential tsunami? If i go back and put my sources.list to 'stable', won't it make it simpler and safer? Or is it all redundant, in the sense that it's the same? Or from then on, will i be installing everything from Sid, and if so, i might as well do a 'dist-upgrade' to Sid and live with it?


Another reason you want the repos from where you got the app enabled is when the package get updated. Imagine you install a package from Sid then disable the repo. Then after a week a horrible security problem is discovered so a new version is uploaded.

With Sid disabled in your sources you would blissfully keep using the dangerous version because you get no updates from Sid.

But if you leave it enabled and uses default-release you will get the updated version from sid... but only that. It's *very* important to ensure the packages from Sid gets updated because that's where the most horrible bugs are.

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Postby rickh » 2007-05-27 20:02

Lavene's comments tie directly to what I have found to be the case. Given the setup I described above:

1. If you set out to install a program available only in Sid (e.g. aptitude install artwiz-cursor), aptitude will install it directly from Sid without any inquiry. If it exists in both Testing and Sid, it will install the Testing version.

2. Once you have installed a program from Sid (even as an automatically installed dependency), that program is somehow marked as "update from Sid," and subsequent upgrades or dist-upgrades will check Sid for newer versions.
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