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I notice that when I try to install rhythmbox in xubuntu 12.04, it seems to depend on gnome desktop and nautilus, neither of which I want.

sudo apt-get install rhythmbox
[sudo] password for mark: 
Reading package lists... Done
Building dependency tree       
Reading state information... Done
The following extra packages will be installed:
  gir1.2-gst-plugins-base-0.10 gir1.2-gstreamer-0.10 gir1.2-peas-1.0
  gir1.2-rb-3.0 gnome-desktop3-data libdiscid0 libdmapsharing-3.0-2 libexempi3
  libgnome-desktop-3-2 libmusicbrainz3-6 libpeas-1.0-0 libpeas-common
  librhythmbox-core5 nautilus nautilus-sendto python-mako python-markupsafe
  rhythmbox-data rhythmbox-mozilla rhythmbox-plugin-cdrecorder
  rhythmbox-plugin-zeitgeist rhythmbox-plugins
Suggested packages:
  eog gnome-sushi pidgin gajim python-beaker python-mako-doc
  gnome-control-center
The following NEW packages will be installed
  gir1.2-gst-plugins-base-0.10 gir1.2-gstreamer-0.10 gir1.2-peas-1.0
  gir1.2-rb-3.0 gnome-desktop3-data libdiscid0 libdmapsharing-3.0-2 libexempi3
  libgnome-desktop-3-2 libmusicbrainz3-6 libpeas-1.0-0 libpeas-common
  librhythmbox-core5 nautilus nautilus-sendto python-mako python-markupsafe
  rhythmbox rhythmbox-data rhythmbox-mozilla rhythmbox-plugin-cdrecorder
  rhythmbox-plugin-zeitgeist rhythmbox-plugins
0 upgraded, 23 newly installed, 0 to remove and 0 not upgraded.
Need to get 3,688 kB of archives.
After this operation, 15.0 MB of additional disk space will be used.
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2 Answers

up vote 3 down vote accepted

You dont have to install all the recommended packages - it is these extra packages that have a gnome & nautilus dependency.

The following simulates an install on xubuntu 12.04 N.B. -s is the simulate parameter.

sudo apt-get -s --no-install-recommends install rhythmbox
Reading package lists... Done
Building dependency tree       
Reading state information... Done
The following extra packages will be installed:
  gir1.2-gst-plugins-base-0.10 gir1.2-gstreamer-0.10 gir1.2-rb-3.0 libdiscid0 libgmime-2.6-0 libmusicbrainz3-6 libneon27-gnutls libpeas-1.0-0 libpeas-common
  libquvi-scripts libquvi7 librhythmbox-core5 libtotem-plparser17 media-player-info rhythmbox-data
Suggested packages:
  gstreamer0.10-plugins-bad gstreamer0.10-plugins-ugly gnome-control-center
Recommended packages:
  rhythmbox-mozilla rhythmbox-plugin-cdrecorder rhythmbox-plugin-zeitgeist rhythmbox-plugins
The following NEW packages will be installed
  gir1.2-gst-plugins-base-0.10 gir1.2-gstreamer-0.10 gir1.2-rb-3.0 libdiscid0 libgmime-2.6-0 libmusicbrainz3-6 libneon27-gnutls libpeas-1.0-0 libpeas-common
  libquvi-scripts libquvi7 librhythmbox-core5 libtotem-plparser17 media-player-info rhythmbox rhythmbox-data

As you can see above, removing the recommended packages using --no-install-recommends as a parameter removes the gnome & nautilus packages.

Thus - install rhythmbox and its plugins minus gnome & nautilus:

sudo apt-get --no-install-recommends install rhythmbox rhythmbox-plugins
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The short answer is, you can install RhythmBox without those dependencies -see @fossfreedom's answer above, but it's a somewhat roundabout way.

The good news is, that libgnome-desktop is NOT gnome-desktop, and isn't going to change your XFCE/Xubuntu to regular Ubuntu. As for nautilus, it may be used for some functions of Rhythmbox (probably file management related); it's not going to replace Thunar as your default file manager, although if you ever want to run Nautilus for some reason, you could probably do so.


Meta-discussion on apt-get and installing recommends by default

apt-get on Ubuntu is set to install recommended packages by default. This behavior appears to be inherited from Debian 5 (Lenny) onwards -- it's the same in Ubuntu Lucid; before Debian Lenny, it was disabled. Some developers will abuse or mindlessly set recommends when it may not be needed, but it's probably the default for a reason.

You can check it's status by running:

sudo apt-config dump | grep Recommends

and if it returns APT::Install-Recommends "1"; (or true), yours is set up to install recommends.

You can change this graphically by installing Synaptic, going to Edit...Preferences and unchecking "Consider recommended packages as dependencies." But if you've read this far, it's easier to just put APT::Install-Recommends "0"; in /etc/apt/apt.conf ;)

The best option is to do it on a case-by-case basis as @fossfreedom's answer suggests.

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This seems to be contradicted by the following answer –  Mark Williams May 20 '12 at 4:27
    
izx, can you update your answer to remove the error about RhytmBox dependencies and also add the info about /etc/apt/apt.conf.d/99synaptic that you made in your deleted comment? –  Chan-Ho Suh May 20 '12 at 10:27
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