I recently did a project involving a lot of messy installs. After manually undoing what evil I have done I realize I have broken a lot of dependencies and instead of manually slaving over each one, I'd like to 'go back in time', before I messed up my installation.


I'm afraid this news will come too late, but it will be of use next time: you would have been able to return to your old situation -- as a matter of fact, to switch between the mess and your pristine Ubuntu -- if you had set up a root jail (using e.g. pbuilder) before starting to mess about.

However, not all is lost. From /var/log/apt/ you should be able to trace the packages you installed. An apt-get --purge remove of all of these should get you back to just where you were. That's one of the good things of the Debian packaging system.

If your mucking about involved not only apt-get installs, but also sudo make installs, then your luck depends somewhat on how well that software was packaged. Do however try the corresponding sudo make uninstalls. And remind yourself again to next time set the installation prefix to /usr/local :-/

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