Aptitude is a package manager, a front-end to APT that can be used instead of apt-get or Synaptic.
Some advantages over apt-get
- Solves dependencies in a smarter way
- Cleans automatically when you remove a program by removing unneeded dependencies
- Pins packages in a very simple way: aptitude hold packagename pins, and aptitude unhold packagename unpins.
- More complete options, it includes search, show, changelog, forbid-version options.
Available from the repos (for documentation, install aptitude-doc-en or another available language)
Important: Before using it run first:
Do not use both apt-get and aptitude, just stick with one of them. If you use apt-get you might need to run aptitude keep-all before you use aptitude to update, install, or remove packages.
It works in two modes
As a CLI by typing the command with options in a terminal, for example:
aptitude search programname
aptitude show programname
aptitude install programname
aptitude remove programname
aptitude purge programname
–Free disk space:
aptitude clean –purge-unused
–Config files: list the ones no longer needed:
aptitude search ~c
Then remove them with:
aptitude purge $(aptitude search ~c -F “%p”)
It can also be used as a GUI
started by simply typing aptitude in a root terminal. For help with the GUI, consult this page.
Where apt-get is a better choice
If you installed a .deb that doesn’t have all the dependencies satisfied it’s preferable you use:
apt-get -f install
to download and install dependencies rather than “aptitude -f install”. If you do use “aptitude -f install” you might have to respond “n” to the first question because by default aptitude will try to remove the installed package rather than download dependencies.
- Aptitude Manual
- Command-line reference