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Re: [Nano-devel] getting Debian's newest version of nano, a quick soluti

From: Benno Schulenberg
Subject: Re: [Nano-devel] getting Debian's newest version of nano, a quick solution
Date: Sat, 29 Jul 2017 14:48:48 +0200
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Linux x86_64; rv:52.0) Gecko/20100101 Thunderbird/52.2.1

Hello Mike,

Op 24-07-2017 om 23:58 schreef Mike Scalora:
One of my most frequent annoyances is that every time I login to a new
server VM instance (almost always Debian based) or fresh Raspberry Pi
image the version of nano is circa 2.2.6. I used to build nano from source
but the time and dev dependencies are significant on a lean server
instance and/or whimpy little ARM cpu. For micro SD card based Pis, the
disk space is also significant.

I'm aware that there advantages of building from source but for me it's not practical is situations the frequently arise in my workflows.

I've tried several methods to install pre-built packages. I'm sure this is
a more general problem affecting other software but I've not found clear
set of instructions for updating a package like this to much better,
current, release versions without building from source.

I'm far from being a linux guru so I thought I would see if anyone had
some feedback (e.g. "that's a horrible idea", "this will break XYZ") for
these instructions before I shared it more generally:

A few remarks about your recipe.  First, why is the "deb-src" line needed?
Second, why first remove the old nano before installing a newer one?  And
third, in your nanorc you set backupdir but you don't set backup -- without
the latter the former won't have any effect.  (And $HOME should be expanded
by the user to his/her home directory; nano will not do that.)

Instead of editing the sources list twice, I would do this:

  sudo nano /etc/apt/sources.list

and add this line:

  deb unstable main


  sudo nano /etc/apt/apt.conf

and put in this line:

  APT::Default-Release "zesty";

where "zesty" should be replaced with whatever was in the other
active lines of the sources.list file.


  sudo apt-get update

To see which newer nano is available:

  apt-get --simulate -t unstable  install  nano

If that is okay, install it with:

  sudo apt-get  -t unstable  install  nano

This avoids having to edit the sources.list file twice and running
'apt-get update' twice.  It also allows for easy installing of other
packages from Debian unstable by simply adding '-t unstable' to the
apt-get command.


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