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I installed Ubuntu 13.10 on VirtualBox, ran apt-get update, then apt-get upgrade and faced the following message

246 upgraded, 0 newly installed, 0 to remove and 3 not upgraded.
Need to get 194 MB/203 MB of archives.
After this operation, 6,602 kB of additional disk space will be used.

The message basically says: 1. 194-204 MB of packages (Why isn't it sure ?) 2. Only ~6 MB of space will be used to install ~200 MB worth of packages

How is this possible ?

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

The slash indicates an of. Meaning of the 203 MB of archives required you have already got 9MB, and therefore 194MB remains. As for the 6,602kB, you should note that it's telling you how much additional space is going to be used, this doesn't include the re-use of currently occupied space as far as I know, which will occur if any files are replaced. So more than 6,602 kB of space might be used but because some of it is already being used by files that will be replaced it might not be considered additional space because it will not increase your hard drive usage. I have no sources to back up my statements, this is just what my understanding has always been.

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But it took considerable amount of time to download, it sure looks like a lot more than 9 MB. Thank you. – Muhammad Gelbana Jan 14 '14 at 6:25
The 9MB is what you already have, the 194MB is what it was downloading. – mango Jan 14 '14 at 6:26

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