Azimout's Linux weblog

Transitional and dummy packages

with one comment

Often packages in Ubuntu are replaced in newer releases by other packages, or they change name, or are merged into a single package or divided into multiple ones. To ease upgrading, these packages become “dummy” or “transitional” packages, which are practically empty files that depend on the newer packages.

After upgrading a few times, your system might have a non-trivial amount of these packages, especially if you have been curious and have installed multiple packages of your own over the years. These do not take up a huge amount of space (they’re usually around 50kB each), but are needlessly clogging the package database.

To remove them using Synaptic, go to the “Status” section, select “Installed” and then search for the words “dummy” or “transitional”. Purge any packages that come up, and you’re done!


Written by azimout

16/04/2010 at 14:15

Posted in Tricks

One Response

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  1. I understand your description. Thanks. My question is why anyone would install a transitional package? If I am installing a package from, say, Synaptic on Ubuntu, why would I also include a transitional package? For updates the update manager is supposed to handle all that is needed for package updates. So again, who needs transitional packages. If they are there that is one thing, but why go out of my way to install one.

    Joel Dubow

    24/07/2013 at 14:43

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