In stable releases up to and including Potato,
dselect was the
principal package maintenance tool. For Sarge, you should consider using
dselect automatically selects all
"Required", "Important", and "Standard" packages.
dselect has a somewhat strange user interface. Most people get
used to it, however. It has four commands (Capital means CAPITAL!):
Q Quit. Confirm current selection and quit anyway.
R Revert! I did not mean it.
D Damn it! I do not care what dselect thinks. Just Do it!
U Set all to sUggested state
With D and Q, you can select conflicting selections
at your own risk. Handle these commands with care.
Add a line containing the option "expert" in
/etc/dpkg/dselect.cfg to reduce noise.
If your machine runs
dselect slowly then you might consider
dselect on another (faster) machine in order to determine
the packages you want to install, then use apt-get install on the
slow machine to install them.