[Pkg-xfce-devel] Bug#506406: xfce4: apt bug causes gdm to pull in unneeded/unwanted gnome dependencies

Frans Pop elendil at planet.nl
Mon Jan 5 18:58:28 UTC 2009

severity 506406 minor

On Monday 05 January 2009, Yves-Alexis Perez wrote:
> Well, testing the desktop task not really, especially if it uses
> Packages files. But we can test installing xdm on top of xfce4.

That's not sufficient. What would need to be tested is installing xdm and 
xfce at the same time, just like tasksel would do.
I've just tried this, but it hardly has any effect.

Hmm. It looks like this is only an issue when the task is installed *from 
aptitude itself*, and *not* when it is installed using tasksel or during 
a new installation from D-I.
That means it's almost impossible to test without actually uploading 
tasksel, that it's unlikely that it can be fixed through some creative 
change in tasksel, that IMO it is not even remotely an important issue 
and that it is almost certainly not an issue in tasksel, but in aptitude.

AFAICT it can be worked around by first selecting the xfce meta packages 
in aptitude and only then selecting other packages, such as gdm.
If I do that, aptitude only wants to install 720MB instead of 1027 MB 
worth of packages.

> It'll work (but as there's no way to chose session from xdm, it may be
> more painful for end users then using gdm, as the correct way to start
> Xfce is to run startxfce4 and not “just“ running the registered session
> manager (which is the case by default on *dm).

I don't get this. I just gave it a try and Xfce started fine with xdm as 
display manager. I don't see any difference.

> > There is a slight risk of incompatibility with tasksel.
> What do you mean?

See #510422. AFAIK the fix has never actually been tested. From the tests 
I've just done it looks like it should work though.

> Uh, oh, well, yeah, sorry :)
> Installed xdm, it just look awful. I don't know about xdm themes, but
> I'm not sure cooking an xdm desktop-base theme would be done easily.

I would think it's almost certainly to late for that for Lenny.

xdm looks more basic then gdm and is less themed, but TBH that's exactly 
what I'd expect with a lightweight DE. And it does have the Debian logo.

> Simon Huggins told me on IRC that you talked about this issue and that
> in tasksel tasks (tasksel/tasks/xfce-desktop for example) Keys: and
> Packages: stuff were treated differently, and that we might have a
> chance there. Could you elaborate on this?

I did talk to Simon, but we did not talk about that. He asked how the 
definition of a task could be changed or overruled, which is a different 

So, switching from gdm to xdm may work, but there is no real way to test 
that. My advise is to just leave things as they are for Lenny and just 
live with the issue.

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