Take the acroread or libpam-ldap packages as examples.

Even when installed with apt-get --force-yes they still ask questions:

  • acroread wants to know whether acrobat should be the standard PDF reader (how to assume yes?)
  • libpam-ldap What's your LDAP-Servers URI, version, password, ...? (how to just assume anything, the ldap.conf will be overwritten by puppet anyway)

Is there a "for god's sake assume anything and stop nagging"-switch for apt-get?



export DEBIAN_FRONTEND=noninteractive
apt-get -y install package1 package2
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Another solution: use yes command to blindly answer yes to all questions.

Apt is smart enough that this solution isn't recommended unless:

  1. you know what you're doing, and

  2. the -y and --force-yes options don't do what you want

In my case, I want to downgrade Nginx, and I don't care about the dependencies. For some reason force-yes didn't work, nor did the DEBIAN_FRONTEND=noninteractive environment variable.

Here's how to downgrade a package noninteractively:

yes | apt install nginx-common=1.4.6-1ubuntu3.3 nginx-full=1.4.6-1ubuntu3.3
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Your first problem

acroread wants to know, whether acrobat should be standard PDF reader

here it's asking you to set acroread as default PDF reader manually; it won't set automatically unless you have no other PDF readers pre-installed in your Ubuntu system. But with the Ubuntu install by default you will get a PDF reader.

Bottom-Line: you have to set it manually due to multiple applications for the single operation.

second issue:

libpam-ldap: What's your LDAP-Servers URI, version, password, ...

You are simply giving permission to perform the single operation and not to any of setting URL, passwords, etc.

Bottom-Line : Ubuntu will do what you asked it to do.

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  • There's no PDF viewer on Ubuntu Server and still apt-get --no-install-recommends --force-yes install acroread will ask! And in the second part I just don't get what you want to tell me... – arney Jun 14 '13 at 17:25

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