I am running Debian testing (etch) on my laptop. I did what seemed to be an inoffensive upgrade using synaptic, but that broke everything: my session would crash while starting and everything would be very unstable. I think this is related to a bug in unstable, although the suggested fix doesn't work.

I started working on reversing the damage by downgrading the packages that were upgraded. What follows is the messy path I used.

cd /var/cache/apt/archives/ ls -altru > /root/order cd /root/\r\ncp order tmp vi tmp # keep only the files that were accessed recently awk \'{print $8}\' tmp | sort -n | less awk \'{print $8}\' tmp | sort -n > upgraded sed -e \'s/^\(\).$/\1/\' upgraded cd - for f in cat /root/upgraded; do if [ ! -d $f ]; then ls $f; fi; done
for f in cat /root/upgraded; do if [ ! -d $f ]; then ls $f | wc; fi; done cd -\r\nsed -e \'s/^\(\).$/\1/\' upgraded > u cd -\r\nfor f in cat /root/u; do if [ ! -d $f ]; then ls ${f}_ ; fi; done # look how many we have of those packages for f in cat /root/u; do if [ ! -d $f ]; then ls ${f} | sed -n \'1p\' ; fi; done # print the earliest version of each package for f in cat /root/u; do if [ ! -d $f ]; then ls ${f}* | sed -n \'1p\' ; fi; done > /root/old # those are the old packages dpkg -i cat /root/old # install those packages aptitude # from there, we start debugging: we have bunch of broken packages because we messed up dependencies

We use dpkg to fix magically everything:

cd /var/cache/apt/archives/ dpkg -i gnome-panel-data_2.12.2-3_all.deb gnome-terminal-data_2.12.0-2_all.deb gcc-4.0-base_4.0.2-9_i386.deb libffi4_4.0.3-1_i386.deb synaptic_0.57.8_i386.deb gnome-games_1%3a2.12.3-1_i386.deb gstreamer0.10-plugins-ugly_0.10.2-1_i386.deb kdelibs-bin_4%3a3.5.1-2_i386.deb kdelibs4c2a_4%3a3.5.1-2_i386.deb libavahi-qt3-1_0.6.7-1_i386.deb libglu1-xorg_6.9.0.dfsg.1-4_i386.deb libgnat-4.1_4.1.0-1_i386.deb libgtkmm-2.4-1c2a_1%3a2.6.5-1_i386.deb xserver-xorg_6.9.0.dfsg.1-4_i386.deb dpkg -i gnome-games-data_1%3a2.12.3-1_all.deb libffi4_4.0.3-1_i386.deb libgnat-4.1_4.1.0-1_i386.deb dpkg -i gcc-4.0-base_4.0.3-1_i386.deb dpkg -i libgcc1_1%3a4.0.3-1_i386.deb dpkg -i libstdc++6_4.0.3-1_i386.deb dpkg --remove mozilla-firefox-gnome-support mozilla-firefox dpkg -i dselect_1.13.17_i386.deb

I now have a working laptop again, and I'll be much more careful in upgrading, looking at solutions like metche

Created . Edited .