Debian DPKG and APT Musings

Dan Shearer dan at
Tue Dec 10 13:02:42 CST 2002

On Tue, 10 Dec 2002, Christopher Yeoh wrote:

> Its probably more appropriate to compare rpm against dpkg rather than
> apt 

I'm sure of it. Neither rpm nor dpkg are designed to resolve dependencies,
just to be aware that they exist and not break them. One of the biggest
jobs apt does is dependency management.

> and it should be possible to do the same things with apt-rpm

That is largely true. Unfortunately the apt-rpm source has not been merged
back into the apt source, and as far as I can see this isn't an immediate

> (though I've never tried apt-rpm myself).

I use it a bit. They've mostly done a port, but added a very small
number of things such as digital signatures in an rpm-y sort of way. The
Debian method is quite different, because among other things a release is
signed not just the packages in the release. As far as I can tell the
people at Conectiva tried as hard as possible to respect the original.

Conectiva's quality of package management seems quite good. I've done some
fairly major dist-upgrades without any problem.

Dan Shearer
Open Source Manager
Mob: +61 411 49 1800
Tel: +61 8 8130 3104
dan at

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