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First look at the image:

enter image description here

You can see from the image that the apt process is downloading the repository updates, the one at the moment is one that is 5.406 KB of size, to which the download as only gotten 1.831 KB which is 34% of that package. At the far left, in the same line we can see the suppose "total" download percent, which shows 82%.

I would think that this is 82% if the total packages needed to download, but then I would be mistaken. After downloading the package mentioned above, this 82% instead of going up, might go down like 73%. Even if it get to 99% does not mean it is 1% from finishing. This 99% could go down when downloading the following package.

So since this left most percent does not actually stand for the total package percent, what does it stand for since it confuses me when waiting for a download or checking the downloads and seeing it get to 95%, then back to 60%, then up to 80%, then down to 76% and so on.

So my questions are:

  1. Where is the actual TOTAL percent which shows how much has been done and how much is left?

  2. Does adding 3rd party PPA (Xorg Edgers, webup8, xbmc...) influence in the correct check for the total percent?

  3. Why the abnormal jumps between percents where they go down instead of up (eg From 85% to 81%)

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SWAG:Maybe it doesn't look ahead at all the repositories and shows you the percent downloaded of what it currently knows about. rsync works that way with the total number of files to check. Looking ahead at everything just to get a total for a message could be a lot of overhead. –  Joe Jan 30 '13 at 23:06
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1 Answer

up vote 3 down vote accepted

Apt-get typically looks at multiple repositories instead of just one. Why check them all just to see what the total is when you check them all just to pull a text file anyway? It would make the process a little less than twice as long.

So to answer your points...

  1. There is no total percent since apt-get would have to check every repository just to see how much there was. Like Joe said, it would create a lot of overhead.

  2. Adding a 3rd party repository would affect the total percent, but neither you nor apt-get knows what it is. When apt-get came to that repository the percentage on the left would have it's own iteration through 100%.

  3. The jumps are actually (usually) really fast iterations through 100% as it goes through each repository, and you only catch a glimpse as it flies through 100% multiple times. When it appears to go down it's actually not quite as far in the next scan through the next repository.

I am not an expert on this kind of thing so someone correct me if that's not right.

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Point 2 is very good and thanks for 3 buddy. –  Luis Alvarado Jan 31 '13 at 23:45
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