Debian's APT 2.7 Packaging Tool Begins Rolling Out "Snapshots" Support

Written by Michael Larabel in Debian on 3 May 2023 at 12:00 AM EDT. 5 Comments
Debian's APT packaging tool that is also used by downstreams like Ubuntu has begun seeing initial support for "snapshots" introduced.

Released on Tuesday was APT 2.7.0 and one of the few new features with this release is initial support for snapshots, as added by Ubuntu/Debian developer Julian Andres Klode.

This is a preliminary implementation for supporting the --snapshot argument and the implementation is subject to change, especially in the near-term prior to APT 2.8.

With supported APT server configurations for snapshots, this feature is intended to allow accessing a "snapshot" of the available packages at a particular point in time. The new documentation cites --snapshot 20220102T030405Z with the timestamp (YYYYMMDDTHHMMSSZ / snapshot ID) for accessing an APT archive snapshot as of 2 January 2022. Related to this initial snapshots code is also adding a --update argument for ensuring the command always installs the latest versions of a given package rather than honoring any snapshot-specified behavior.

More details on the Debian APT snapshot support via this APT merge request introducing the preliminary support that is found in the v2.7 release.
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