Bug#450777: tasksel: Tasksel uninstalls packages without asking - Debian

This is a discussion on Bug#450777: tasksel: Tasksel uninstalls packages without asking - Debian ; Package: tasksel Severity: important Version of the tasksel package: 2.66 Yesterday a new server (dhcp, samba, nis+nfs, cups, ntp) was set up (a fresh etch install) and has already replaced our old server. Today I noticed that "at" was not ...

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Thread: Bug#450777: tasksel: Tasksel uninstalls packages without asking

  1. Bug#450777: tasksel: Tasksel uninstalls packages without asking

    Package: tasksel
    Severity: important

    Version of the tasksel package: 2.66

    Yesterday a new server (dhcp, samba, nis+nfs, cups, ntp) was set up (a
    fresh etch install) and has already replaced our old server.

    Today I noticed that "at" was not installed somehow. Having never really
    used tasksel (it wasn't run during installation, iirc), I started it to
    see if there was some kind of basic or minimal (standard) task of
    packages.

    Tasksel had "Print Server", "File Server", and "Mail server" selected.
    Since there was no such task that I was looking for, I deselected the
    above and chose "manual package selection" instead. Pressing
    immediately (without any question being asked) lead to the following
    actions:

    - Removal of exim4, nfs-kernel-server, cupsys, samba and lots of other
    (less important) packages.

    And yes, the machine in question is our main fileserver. Fortunately,
    nobody's working during the weekend.

    - Installation of nullmailer as MTA.

    I would never have expected this. Tasksel does only have an button
    at the bottom of the menu, and without a button I would at
    least have expected to be asked for confirmation.

    I am setting the severity of this bug to important. I would have given
    it a higher severity, but since I couldn't find the bug in the archive
    nobody else seem to have hit it. So I am assuming that I must have done
    something stupid. Still, I don't see from the above what it was.

    Hm. Having repaired the damage, I am running tasksel -t now. The
    pre-selected set of tasks seems to be matching the currently installed
    package selection. Not changing it leads to no action. I had expected
    these to be pre-defined tasks which would lead to a different (bigger)
    set of packages being installed. This is why I deselected them. And I
    expected "manual package selection" to use the currently installed
    package set as a base and just start aptitude.

    These assumptions were obviously wrong. I don't know the reasoning
    behind tasksel's behaviour. But *this* came as a real surprise to me.

    BTW, running tasksel -t and deselecting the selected tasks prints the
    following output:

    Use of uninitialized value in concatenation (.) or string at
    /usr/bin/tasksel line 345.
    Use of uninitialized value in concatenation (.) or string at
    /usr/bin/tasksel line 345.
    Use of uninitialized value in concatenation (.) or string at
    /usr/bin/tasksel line 345.
    aptitude -y remove printconf hpijs foomatic-db-gutenprint cupsys-bsd
    foomatic-filters-ppds hplip foomatic-db-hpijs cupsys cupsys-client
    cupsys-driver-gutenprint foomatic-db-engine smbfs netatalk smbclient
    swat samba-doc winbind samba nfs-kernel-server procmail qpopper
    spamassassin exim4 sa-exim mailagent exim4-daemon-light mutt mailx
    exim4-config uw-imapd
    Use of uninitialized value in concatenation (.) or string at
    /usr/bin/tasksel line 345.
    Use of uninitialized value in concatenation (.) or string at
    /usr/bin/tasksel line 345.
    Use of uninitialized value in concatenation (.) or string at
    /usr/bin/tasksel line 345.
    aptitude

    So, "manual package selection" results in aptitude being run
    interactively only *after* the previous task changes have been
    performed. So no kind of "integrated" process here, where the task
    selection leads to different sets of pre-selected packages in the
    interactive aptitude.

    Does the current version in testing or unstable still behave like this?

    Still recovering,
    Nis

    -- System Information:
    Debian Release: 4.0
    APT prefers stable
    APT policy: (500, 'stable')
    Architecture: i386 (i686)
    Shell: /bin/sh linked to /bin/bash
    Kernel: Linux 2.6.21.3
    Locale: LANG=de_DE.UTF-8, LC_CTYPE=de_DE.UTF-8 (charmap=UTF-8)



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  2. Bug#450777: tasksel: Tasksel uninstalls packages without asking

    Nis Martensen wrote:
    > Tasksel had "Print Server", "File Server", and "Mail server" selected.
    > Since there was no such task that I was looking for, I deselected the
    > above


    I'm not sure why it wasn't clear to you that it had these selected since
    it detected you already had those tasks installed, and that when you
    de-selected them, it went on to remove them. This is the same as
    de-selecting a selected package in some other package manager, except
    unlike packages, tasks can be partially installed.

    > set of packages being installed. This is why I deselected them. And I
    > expected "manual package selection" to use the currently installed
    > package set as a base and just start aptitude.


    There is no way to start aptitude interactively and at the same time
    tell it to remove some tasks, so tasksel has to run aptitude twice when
    you tell it to do both things.

    The best way to remove this point of confusion from tasksel would
    probably be to remove the interactive option entirely, which is probably
    a good idea anyway, since it cannot be used from within the installer.

    --
    see shy jo

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  3. Bug#450777: tasksel: Tasksel uninstalls packages without asking

    Joey Hess wrote:
    > There is no way to start aptitude interactively and at the same time
    > tell it to remove some tasks, so tasksel has to run aptitude twice when
    > you tell it to do both things.


    Seems this is no longer true, so I'll implement that.

    --
    see shy jo

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  4. Bug#450777: marked as done (tasksel: Tasksel uninstalls packages without asking)

    Your message dated Mon, 12 Nov 2007 07:17:03 +0000
    with message-id
    and subject line Bug#450777: fixed in tasksel 2.70
    has caused the attached Bug report to be marked as done.

    This means that you claim that the problem has been dealt with.
    If this is not the case it is now your responsibility to reopen the
    Bug report if necessary, and/or fix the problem forthwith.

    (NB: If you are a system administrator and have no idea what I am
    talking about this indicates a serious mail system misconfiguration
    somewhere. Please contact me immediately.)

    Debian bug tracking system administrator
    (administrator, Debian Bugs database)



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