[svlug] Debian upgrade (was Debian Upgrade 7.8)

Rick Moen rick at svlug.org
Fri Jan 16 13:30:16 PST 2015

I wrote:

> Fortunately, you have about 240MB of headroom without even digging into
> space reserved to the root user[2], so, you should be able to start doing
> selective 'apt-get remove' operations to cure the bloat.

As a fine point, if you're determined to utterly banish not just the bones
of a program but also any state files associated with it, then include the
'--purge' switch.

# apt-get remove --purge foo
or, equivalently
# apt-get purge foo

$ man apt-get 

           Use purge instead of remove for anything that would be removed.
           An asterisk ("*") will be displayed next to packages which are
           scheduled to be purged.  remove --purge is equivalent to the
           purge command. Configuration Item: APT::Get::Purge.

I'm now belatedly spending some time poring through Scott's original
posting, http://lists.svlug.org/archives/svlug/2015-January/060173.html .

[You were at the 'no space left on device' level of usage, but managed to
remove a few things and cleaned out the package cache to give you some

> What went wrong, what did I do wrong, and how can I prevent this from
> biting me in the ass again?

Well, pilgrim, love to help you on that question, but I don't think the
information you presented (no criticism intended, as it's undoubtedly just
about all you had) doesn't tell us how you created the problem situation.

You started with about a 9.5GB root filesystem, and I infer that you
originally had the KDE4 suite.  Your posting left unclear whether you had
started with GNOME3 _also_ installed by intention, or, in the alternative,
whether you were actually surprised to find it installed at the end of

So, maybe you should start by saying where you started, i.e., one DE or two,
and where you expected to end up.

If you intentionally had _both_ the KDE4 and GNOME3 suites installed, I am
not very surprised at you running out of room on a 9.5GB root filesystem.
https://www.debian.org/releases/stable/amd64/apds02.html.en says:

Task:  GNOME (default)   Space needed to install (MB):  3236
Task:  KDE               Space needed to install (MB):  3175

('Tasks' are metapackages and can be pored through using the tasksel tool,
if you wish.)  That's six and a half gigs to just walk in the door for those
two DEs, and that's not including any part of the base OS or user state
files or anything else.  (I haven't been a user of either suite for at least
a decade, so you'd have to get more-precise estimates of needed space from
someone else here.)

The kitchen sink in Debian is a _big_ kitchen sink.  It's more like 
the Fairmount Hotel's kitchen, plus all the laundry rooms.  If you're 
going to go around installing multiple DEs, then, yeah, maybe you simply 
need a good bit more than 9.5GB to play with.

More information about the svlug mailing list