Is MintUpdate the best way to keep LMDE up-to-date? [SOLVED]

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Is MintUpdate the best way to keep LMDE up-to-date? [SOLVED]

Postby Wrinkly on Sat Oct 23, 2010 1:45 pm

My thanks are due to Bob (username: rtrev) for prompting this question...

"Is MintUpdate the best way to keep LMDE up-to-date?"

I'd really like the answer to be a simple YES, but I'm aware that there's probably some sort of sudo thing that can be used as an alternative.
Last edited by Wrinkly on Mon Oct 25, 2010 4:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Is MintUpdate the best way to keep LMDE up-to-date?

Postby Aging Technogeek on Sat Oct 23, 2010 2:54 pm

There is "some sort of sudo thing" you can use' It is

Code: Select all
sudo apt-get update


followed by

Code: Select all
sudo apt-get upgrade


or, if you prefer it on one line,

Code: Select all
sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get upgrade


This, followed by your password , will install all available updates.

You can do the same thing with Mint Update Manager by enabling all five levels of updates (Edit=>Preferences check both "Visible" and "Safe" for levels 4&5) and using the "Select All" button. Then clicking "Install Updates".

It's about the same time either way. Take your choice. I prefer Update Manager because I do not always want to install all Available updates.
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Re: Is MintUpdate the best way to keep LMDE up-to-date?

Postby rtrev on Sat Oct 23, 2010 3:09 pm

Where I think I'm unclear is the difference between upgrade and dist-upgrade. I had people telling me to run this script routinely to stay up to date:


Code: Select all
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get dist-upgrade
sudo apt-get autoremove
sudo apt-get autoclean


They said doing this with a rolling distribution like Debian test would ensure I was always up-to-date.

But, I would assume that if Mint provides MintUpdate with Mint Debian, then they would expect us to use that method.

Hence, my confusion. I can see that sometimes packages are held back. Should we wait for them, or should we grab them? :)

Thanks,
Bob
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Re: Is MintUpdate the best way to keep LMDE up-to-date?

Postby Wrinkly on Sat Oct 23, 2010 3:24 pm

Thanks for giving me the answer I wanted, Aging Technogeek. Since you're a Linux Mint Moderator, I'm sure you know what you're talking about.

But secipolla has thrown a spanner in the works with this post, which I've borrowed from another thread
secipolla wrote:Install the debdelta package because it allows you to not need to download the whole new packages but just the difference between the current version in your system and the new version.

Code: Select all
sudo apt-get install debdelta

Then before you update your system, be it through apt-get/aptitude, Synaptic or mintupdate, you run
Code: Select all
sudo apt-get update && sudo debdelta-upgrade


This will download the deltas (differences) and create the new packages. It will save you a lot of time and bandwidth.
secipolla


Has secipolla got a valid point?
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Re: Is MintUpdate the best way to keep LMDE up-to-date?

Postby Aging Technogeek on Sat Oct 23, 2010 3:33 pm

rtrev,

From the man page for apt-get

upgrade
upgrade is used to install the newest versions of all packages
currently installed on the system from the sources enumerated in
/etc/apt/sources.list. Packages currently installed with new
versions available are retrieved and upgraded; under no
circumstances are currently installed packages removed, or packages
not already installed retrieved and installed.
New versions of
currently installed packages that cannot be upgraded without
changing the install status of another package will be left at
their current version. An update must be performed first so that
apt-get knows that new versions of packages are available.


and

dist-upgrade
dist-upgrade in addition to performing the function of upgrade,
also intelligently handles changing dependencies with new versions
of packages; apt-get has a "smart" conflict resolution system, and
it will attempt to upgrade the most important packages at the
expense of less important ones if necessary. So, dist-upgrade
command may remove some packages
. The /etc/apt/sources.list file
contains a list of locations from which to retrieve desired package
files. See also apt_preferences(5) for a mechanism for overriding
the general settings for individual packages


(In both quotes the emphasis is mine)

You can see the difference in the two options readily. apt-get dist upgrade will uninstall an app if a dependency changes and an app it thinks is more important needs the new dependency.

apt-get upgrade will not install any app if the installation will break a dependency chain for an already installed app.

Wrinkly,

First of all, do not assume that I know what I am saying just because I am a Moderator, I have been wrong more times than I like to remember. I have, however, learned since I became a Moderator to keep silent if I am not pretty sure of my facts.

I am still learning just like all the other Linux users out there. As an example of this, I have never heard of "debdelta" before you mentioned it. If it works as advertised, it should shorten download times for upgrades quite a bit. I must investigate.
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Re: Is MintUpdate the best way to keep LMDE up-to-date?

Postby Wrinkly on Sat Oct 23, 2010 3:41 pm

Aging Technogeek wrote:... do not assume that I know what I am saying just because I am a Moderator ...

Down here where I am, at the lowest level of knowledge, a Moderator is very highly-esteemed.
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Re: Is MintUpdate the best way to keep LMDE up-to-date?

Postby rtrev on Sat Oct 23, 2010 3:47 pm

Aging Technogeek wrote:rtrev,

From the man page for apt-get

<liberally snipped>


Okay, but could you please clarify where MintUpdate fits into this? For example, I just ran MintUpdate, and it told me nothing new was available. But running apt-get update && apt-get upgrade got me the new xorg server.

I understand (I think :) how to upgrade a normal distribution, but a *rolling* distribution I'm not clear about. Why didn't MintUpdate tell me about the xorg-server update? Was it because it was best that I didn't upgrade that yet?

Do you see where I'm confused?

Thanks much!
Bob
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Re: Is MintUpdate the best way to keep LMDE up-to-date?

Postby Wrinkly on Sat Oct 23, 2010 3:47 pm

I've just had a look at http://debdelta.debian.net/ which seems to bear out what secipolla mentioned. Does anybody agree?
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Re: Is MintUpdate the best way to keep LMDE up-to-date?

Postby secipolla on Sat Oct 23, 2010 3:48 pm

Wrinkly wrote:Has secipolla got a valid point?

Just try and see for yourself how much faster it can be.
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Re: Is MintUpdate the best way to keep LMDE up-to-date?

Postby Aging Technogeek on Sat Oct 23, 2010 3:53 pm

rtrev,

Mint Update Manager can sometimes run a few hours to a day or more behind apt-get due to the need for most updates to be checked by the maintainers before being added to Mint Update. Everything available from apt-get will eventually be available in Update Manager.

Wrinkly,

Since secipolla answered your question, i will retire to my further investigation of debdelta.
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Re: Is MintUpdate the best way to keep LMDE up-to-date?

Postby rtrev on Sat Oct 23, 2010 3:55 pm

Aging Technogeek wrote:rtrev,

Mint Update Manager can sometimes run a few hours to a day or more behind apt-get due to the need for most updates to be checked by the maintainers before being added to Mint Update. Everything available from apt-get will eventually be available in Update Manager.


Ahah!! Now I get it. Thank ye kind sir!

Regards,
Bob
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Re: Is MintUpdate the best way to keep LMDE up-to-date?

Postby Wrinkly on Sat Oct 23, 2010 4:01 pm

secipolla wrote:Just try and see for yourself how much faster it can be.

OK, will do. And thanks for the advice - I wish I'd known about it when I first installed LMDE: it took 5 hours for my computer to install the updates. And when it had finished, there was another pile of them to download.
Cheers,
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Re: Is MintUpdate the best way to keep LMDE up-to-date?

Postby Aging Technogeek on Sat Oct 23, 2010 4:09 pm

secipolla and Wrinkly,

I installed debdelta and ran the exact command specified by secipolla. The apt-get update worked as normal, but debdelta upgrade returned a request for three file names and an advisory to check "--help".

From there and the man page for debdelta, I learn that debdelta is intended to be used to determine the differences between two specified files and use the differences found to create a new file that can be used by debdiff to install the changes. This is why the app asked for three file names - the original file, the updated file and the changes file.

I do not see anywhere the ability to use a command like "sudo debdelta upgrade" as a stand alone command to install updates. Maybe I will find it on further investigation or secipolla can point it out for me. If this can truly work as secipolla says, it will speed up the upgrade process considerably.
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Re: Is MintUpdate the best way to keep LMDE up-to-date?

Postby vincent on Sat Oct 23, 2010 4:44 pm

Just to clarify a few things...

In a rolling-release distro such as LMDE, packages are in constant flux and libraries are often added and removed when the package maintainers deem fit, so apt-get upgrade is not recommended in a Debian-based rolling release distro. Run apt-get dist-upgrade on a regular basis, otherwise you'll eventually run into dependency conflicts with your existing packages. As packages in Ubuntu remain relatively unchanged (except for security patches) throughout the lifetime of an Ubuntu-based distro, and packages rarely need to be installed or removed for updates to be completed successfully, an apt-get upgrade is perfectly fine in Ubuntu-based distros, including all versions of Mint besides LMDE.

apt-get autoremove and apt-get clean removes all unneeded packages and removes all deb packages residing in your APT archive in /var/cache/apt/archives that are outdated (respectively). apt-get clean will remove all packages from your APT archive, not just outdated ones. Keep in mind that autoremove can sometimes be a bit inaccurate in its estimation of packages that are safe to remove...I've seen it trying to remove packages such as gdm3 before. My opinion is that deborphan is more reliable in determining unnecessary packages. aptitude also generally handles package dependencies better than apt-get, although if you know what you're doing, either one works fine.

The reason you see a X server update via apt-get upgrade and not via mintUpdate is not "due to the need for most updates to be checked by the maintainers before being added to Mint Update", as Aging Technogeek stated. It's because mintUpdate classifies low-level updates such as X and kernel updates as lvl 4 or 5 updates, which are not installed by default by mintUpdate.

Debdelta allows you to upgrade packages by only downloading the difference between the packages in your APT archive and the packages in the official repos. By default, apt-get upgrade fetches the entire package from the repos when it does an upgrade...in fact, it's not so much as an "upgrade" as a "replacement" for the existing package on your system. Debdelta corrects this by just downloading the diff and uses that to create up-to-date packages (debdelta-upgrade), which you can then proceed to install as normal with an apt-get upgrade.

One last note:
http://www.linuxmint.com/rel_debian.php
Update Manager
The Update Manager used in LMDE is the same as the one in other editions of Linux Mint. No adaptation or changes were made yet to accomodate it to the rolling nature of LMDE.


As such, I recommend the process of "sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get dist-upgrade" to update your packages; not an apt-get upgrade, and not with mintUpdate.
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Re: Is MintUpdate the best way to keep LMDE up-to-date?

Postby Wrinkly on Sat Oct 23, 2010 5:09 pm

Thank you, Vincent, for a most comprehensive answer. There's just one teeny weeny thing that bothers me:
vincent wrote:....Aptitude also generally handles package dependencies better than apt-get, although if you know what you're doing, either one works fine.......... As such, I recommend the process of "sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get dist-upgrade" to update your packages; not an apt-get upgrade, and not with mintUpdate.

I'm a little confused: if aptitude handles stuff better than apt-get, why do you recommend apt-get?

I'm sorry to be a nuisance.
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Re: Is MintUpdate the best way to keep LMDE up-to-date?

Postby vincent on Sat Oct 23, 2010 6:30 pm

Wrinkly wrote:Thank you, Vincent, for a most comprehensive answer. There's just one teeny weeny thing that bothers me:
vincent wrote:....Aptitude also generally handles package dependencies better than apt-get, although if you know what you're doing, either one works fine.......... As such, I recommend the process of "sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get dist-upgrade" to update your packages; not an apt-get upgrade, and not with mintUpdate.

I'm a little confused: if aptitude handles stuff better than apt-get, why do you recommend apt-get?

I'm sorry to be a nuisance.


http://www.debian.org/doc/manuals/debia ... de_literal

2.2.1. apt-get / apt-cache vs. aptitude

The apt-get and apt-cache commands are the most basic package management tool.

apt-get and apt-cache offer only the commandline user interface.
apt-get is most suitable for the major system upgrade between releases, etc.
apt-get offers a robust and stable package resolver which uses the common package state data.
apt-get has been updated to support autoinstall and autoremove of recommended packages.
apt-get has been updated to support logging of package activities.
apt-cache offers a standard regex based search on the package name and description.
apt-get and apt-cache can manage multiple versions of packages using /etc/apt/preferences but it is quite cumbersome.
The aptitude command is the most versatile package management tool.

aptitude offers the fullscreen interactive text user interface.
aptitude offers the commandline user interface, too.
aptitude is most suitable for the daily interactive package management such as inspecting installed packages and searching available packages.
aptitude offers an enhanced package resolver which also uses an extra package state data used only by aptitude.
aptitude supports autoinstall and autoremove of recommended packages.
aptitude supports logging of package activities.
aptitude offers an enhanced regex based search on all of the package metadata.
aptitude can manage multiple versions of packages without using /etc/apt/preferences and it is quite intuitive.
Note
Although the aptitude command comes with rich features such as its enhanced package resolver, this complexity has caused (or may still causes) some regressions such as Bug #411123, Bug #514930, and Bug #570377. In case of doubt, please use the apt-get and apt-cache commands over the aptitude command.


http://www.debian.org/doc/FAQ/ch-pkgtoo ... s-pkgprogs
Note that apt-get ... is the preferred program for package management from console to perform system installation and major system upgrades for its robustness.

Note that aptitude is the preferred program for daily package management from console.


Don't worry, a lot of people are bothered by the apt-get vs aptitude debate. I'm just going to show you what the Debian manual and FAQ states, as per above.

Another thing you have to consider...the above is the viewpoint of Debian. In general, Debian users seem to prefer aptitude. Sidux/aptosid strictly recommends apt-get. Ubuntu recommends its own Software Manager (:lol:), but failing that, apt-get would be the preferred tool (since aptitude is no longer going to be installed by default starting from Natty Narwhal). Mint has its custom apt command in the form of a Python script (look at /usr/local/bin/apt) which uses apt-get, aptitude, and dpkg for various package management tasks. So all in all...meh, just choose what you're more comfortable using.
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Re: Is MintUpdate the best way to keep LMDE up-to-date?

Postby tdockery97 on Sat Oct 23, 2010 7:46 pm

I like using Mint Update because it is very easy to scroll through the updates list to see what is there, and right-click and select ignore for updates you deem dangerous to your current configurations.

That said, I have to admit I may be a wimp. :lol: After having to reinstall my Clonezilla backup 6 times now due to updates borking my system, I've switched from Testing to Stable. I guess my video configuration doesn't want to play nice with new updates. It varied from changing Plymouth resolution to completely locking up at boot. I can live with updating my packages indiviually if needed. Even in Stable it's still LMDE and I'm still using it as my primary OS with Mint 10 as my fallback OS.
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Re: Is MintUpdate the best way to keep LMDE up-to-date?

Postby secipolla on Sat Oct 23, 2010 9:03 pm

Aging Technogeek wrote:secipolla and Wrinkly,

I installed debdelta and ran the exact command specified by secipolla. The apt-get update worked as normal, but debdelta upgrade returned a request for three file names and an advisory to check "--help".

From there and the man page for debdelta, I learn that debdelta is intended to be used to determine the differences between two specified files and use the differences found to create a new file that can be used by debdiff to install the changes. This is why the app asked for three file names - the original file, the updated file and the changes file.

I do not see anywhere the ability to use a command like "sudo debdelta upgrade" as a stand alone command to install updates. Maybe I will find it on further investigation or secipolla can point it out for me. If this can truly work as secipolla says, it will speed up the upgrade process considerably.

The command is debdelta-upgrade not debdelta upgrade
Since it takes some time to create the new packages from merging the installed versions with the delta packages, it's most useful for people that haven't a quite fast connection.
It's most effective with larger packages that have relatively small changes. For example, just recently KDE was updated from 4.4.5-4 to 4.4.5-5. My connection speed is 125 KB/s and debdelta-upgrade gave a virtual speed of around 800 KB/s. This was a specially beneficial circunstance for using debdelta.
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Re: Is MintUpdate the best way to keep LMDE up-to-date?

Postby Wrinkly on Sun Oct 24, 2010 1:11 am

Thanks for all the comments.

I've now installed secipolla's
Code: Select all
sudo apt-get install debdelta

followed by
Code: Select all
sudo apt-get update && sudo debdelta-upgrade


and I've also run Vincent's
Code: Select all
sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get dist-upgrade


and both seemed to do things without stuffing up everything else. If I understand things correctly, both commands do the same job, except that debdelta does it a bit more intelligently and will save me time & bandwidth.

But, until now, I had been running MintUpdate, which is apparently not a very good idea.

So the next two questions are:
Have I somehow broken LMDE by using MintUpdate?
Should I do a complete re-install and then update using only either of the terminal commands mentioned above?
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Re: Is MintUpdate the best way to keep LMDE up-to-date?

Postby randomizer on Sun Oct 24, 2010 1:30 am

Wrinkly wrote:Have I somehow broken LMDE by using MintUpdate?

You tell us. If the system is working you obviously haven't ;)
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