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Re: The value of unmodified conffiles left on disk of removed, but not purged, packages

On 25 February 2018 at 22:42, Don Armstrong <don@xxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
> On Sun, 25 Feb 2018, Dimitri John Ledkov wrote:
>> A couple of conffiles were /etc/X11/Xsession.d/00upstart and
>> /etc/X11/Xsession.d/99upstart which assumed that upstart would be
>> alwasy be available, and in bionic after the above described update
>> started to error out, and prevent gdm3 from completing a login.
> Conffiles which continue to have an effect on the system after their
> package has been removed seems like a bug to me. I'd be tempted in this
> case to provide a transitional upstart package which fixed these
> conffiles to properly test for upstart.[1]
>> Surely, there is no value in keeping them on disk, and unmodified
>> conffiles should be removed, upon package removal.
>> Thoughts?
> This breaks the expectation that `apt remove foo; apt install foo;`
> would lead to foo working with the same configuration if deletion of
> configuration files is meaningful for foo. [For example, apache operates
> this way.]

In my mind, conffiles of a package is a set. If any one of these
conffiles was removed by the admin, imho the whole set is now
modified. And sticking with the current behaviour is imho the path of
least surprise.

If the whole set is unmodified, then deleting all of them, is imho the
path of least surprise.