Provided by: debfoster_2.7-2.1build1_amd64 bug


     debfoster — weed unnecessary Debian packages


     debfoster [-acdefhiknopqrstvV] [--verbose] [--version] [--help] [--quiet] [--force]
               [--mark-only] [--upgrade] [--config file] [--keeperfile file] [--no-keeperfile]
               [--ignore-default-rules] [--show-keepers] [--show-orphans]
               [--show-depends package] [--show-dependents package] [--show-providers package]
               [--show-related package] [--use-tasks] [--option opt=val] [package1 ...]
               [package2- ...]


     debfoster maintains a list of installed packages that were explicitly requested rather than
     installed as a dependency.  Arguments are entirely optional, debfoster can be invoked per se
     after each run of dpkg and/or apt-get.

     Alternatively you can use debfoster to install and remove packages by specifying the
     packages on the command line.  Packages suffixed with a - are removed while packages without
     a suffix are installed.

     If a new package is encountered or if debfoster notices that a package that used to be a
     dependency is now an orphan, it will ask you what to do with it.  If you decide to keep it,
     debfoster will just take note and continue.  If you decide that this package is not
     interesting enough it will be removed as soon as debfoster is done asking questions.  If
     your choices cause other packages to become orphaned more questions will ensue.

     Whenever debfoster asks you about a package, any of the following responses can be given:

       ‘y’         Yes, keep the package. This is the default response.
       ‘n’         No, delete the package.
       ‘p’         Prune the package. This tells debfoster to also delete all packages that are
                   only installed because this package depends on them.  A list of such packages,
                   if any, is shown above the prompt.
       ‘s’         Skip this question. The next time you run debfoster it will ask you again
                   about this package.
       ‘h’         Print a help message.
       ‘i’ or ‘?’  Show information about the package.
       ‘u’         Undo last response.
       ‘q’         Exit without removing packages.  All changes will be lost.
       ‘x’         Save changes to debfoster database, remove unwanted packages, and exit without
                   asking further questions.

   Command line options
     -v, --verbose
             debfoster will show which packages have disappeared, have become dependencies or (if
             Quiet is enabled) have become orphans.

     -V, --version
             Display version and copyright information.

     -h, --help
             Display a concise summary of the available options and argument syntax.

     -f, --force
             Don't ask anything and assume ‘no’ as the answer to all questions.  It also installs
             any packages that seem to be missing, thus forcing your system to comply with the
             debfoster database.  Can have ‘interesting’ results if you're not careful.

     -q, --quiet
             Don't ask anything and assume ‘yes’ as the answer to all questions.  Useful to
             create an initial /var/lib/debfoster/keepers file or to recreate it after changing
             the configuration file.

     -m, --mark-only
             Instructs debfoster to make changes to the keeper file but not to actually install
             or delete any packages.  This can be used to ‘edit’ a keeper file by invoking
             debfoster one or more times in a row.  The changes can then be committed by invoking
             debfoster with the --force option, which will delete/install any necessary packages.
             This is mainly useful for scripts and frontends, but may be useful from the command
             line as well.

     -u, --upgrade
             If used as ‘debfoster -u package’ it will install or upgrade the packages specified
             on the command line and try to upgrade all packages that it relies on.

     -c, --config file
             Specify a different configuration file to use.

     -k, --keeperfile file
             Specify a different debfoster database to use.

     -n, --no-keeperfile
             Don't read the debfoster database and start with an empty list.

     -i, --ignore-default-rules
             This will instruct debfoster to ignore the UseHold, UseEssential, MaxPriority,
             KeepSections, and NokeepSections settings in the config file (i.e., assume that any
             package can be an orphan). This is a good option for those who really want to make
             sure their system is squeaky clean. It's also useful when sharing or transferring a
             keeper file between multiple machines where different config files can cause some
             confusion. Properly used, -i eliminates that uncertainty.

     -a, --show-keepers
             Lists the contents of the debfoster database.

     -s, --show-orphans
             List all orphaned packages that are not mentioned in the debfoster database.

     -d, --show-depends package
             List all packages that this package depends on.

     -e, --show-dependents package
             List all packages in the debfoster database that depend on this package.

     -p, --show-providers package
             List all packages that provide the dependency target specified by package (e.g.
             "debfoster -p x-terminal-emulator" ).

     -r, --show-related package
             List all packages that are only installed because this package depends on them.

     -t, --use-tasks
             Make tasks visible as packages. This will make tasks that are selectable using
             tasksel(1) appear as packages named task-<label>.

     -o, --option opt=val
             Override any configuration option specified in the configuration file.


     Some aspects of the behaviour of debfoster can be configured in the configuration file,
     /etc/debfoster.conf.  Options are specified as
           Option = Value
     Option names are case insensitive.

             Default: apt-get install
             Command invoked with a number of packages on the command line.  The command is not
             passed to /bin/sh but invoked like xargs(1) with a number of packages as extra

             Default: apt-get --purge remove
             Like InstallCmd but for removing packages.

             Default: dpkg -s
             Like InstallCmd but called with a single package as an argument to display
             information on.

             Default: /var/lib/debfoster/keepers
             The file where the list of orphans is stored.  You can use this file for reference
             when installing a machine or even to make identical Debian installs.

             Default: /var/lib/dpkg/status
             The file where dpkg(8) stores its information about which packages are more or less
             installed.  This value can usually be left untouched.

             Default: /var/lib/dpkg/available
             The file where dpkg(8) stores its information about which packages are available.
             This value can usually be left untouched.

             Default: standard
             Any packages with a priority greater than this value will be considered too basic to
             ask questions about.  The default value means that questions will be asked about
             packages with priority "standard", "optional" and "extra".  With the special value
             ‘ANY’ you can indicate that all known priorities should be considered too important
             to ask questions about.  These priority values are known to debfoster (taken from
             the debian-policy package):

             Default: yes
             Use the hold attribute from the Status: line.  Packages with this attribute won't
             ever be upgraded by apt, so it's safe to assume that you want to keep it.

             Default: yes
             Use the Essential: line from dpkg(8) 's status file.  Most packages which are marked
             essential shouldn't be removed anyway, so if you don't want to be bothered with it,
             enable this option.

             Default: yes
             A package that pre-depends on another package requires the latter during
             installation.  This option will make debfoster count these pre-dependencies as
             ordinary dependencies.  If you frequently update your packages you may want to keep
             an eye out for pre-depended packages that have become obsolete.

             Default: yes
             Recommended packages would be installed together with the package that recommends
             them in all usual setups.  This option will make debfoster count these
             recommendations as real dependencies.  Enabling this option will enable you to
             better manage packages which were installed because another package recommended

             Default: no
             Packages suggested by another package usually enhance the function of the latter or
             have a related function which may be useful in combination with the package that
             suggested them.  This option will make debfoster count these suggestions as real
             dependencies.  Using this option will result in even fewer questions being asked.

             Default: no
             Make tasks visible as packages. This will make tasks that are selectable using
             tasksel(1) appear as packages named task-<label>.  debfoster will treat them as if
             they were normal packages. Tasks cannot be removed but marking a task for removal
             will stop debfoster asking questions about it.

             You may find that you are always interested in keeping (for example) documentation.
             With this option you can indicate that packages from a certain section should always
             be kept.  You can specify a comma separated lists of ‘precious’ sections.

             List the sections you are never interested in.  For example, ‘libs’ is a good
             candidate, as most libraries debfoster asks about are leftovers from old packages.

             List name extensions for packages that you want to group with their base packages.
             Applications are often separated into multiple packages with names like "app",
             "app-doc", "app-dev". If you don't want to answer questions about "app-doc", you can
             add the "doc" extension to the GuessDepends list.

             Default: yes
             Remember explicit removals of packages.  If a package is installed that has been
             explicitly removed before, remove it again without asking.  Set this to no if you
             want to be asked anyway.

             Default: no
             Using this option has the same result as having -v on the command line.  It will
             make debfoster show which packages have disappeared or have become a dependency.

     Force   Default: no
             This option has the same meaning as the -f command line option.  All orphaned
             packages are scheduled for removal without asking any question.

     Quiet   Default: no
             Having this option (which has the same meaning as the -q command line argument) in
             your configuration file more or less defeats the purpose of debfoster although the
             KeeperFile is still kept up-to-date.


     Send reports to the Debian bug tracking system:
     with as much information as you can gather (error messages, configuration files, versions of
     dpkg/apt, whatever might be relevant).  A tool such as reportbug might come in handy.


     apt-get(8), apt-cache(8), dpkg(8), deborphan(1) tasksel(1)