"Reclaiming disk space" documentation/guide missing

Ryan Schmidt ryandesign at macports.org
Mon May 25 10:26:05 PDT 2009

On May 25, 2009, at 11:57, Andreas Kotes wrote:

>> To remove old versions of installed ports:
>> sudo port uninstall inactive
> .. brings me down to 564356k - yay!
>> To uninstall old versions of a port at the same time that you  
>> upgrade to
>> the new version:
>> sudo port -u upgrade <portname>
> okay, this seems to be it - I'd like to strongly suggest making  
> this the
> default for non-developers ...

I don't think we should change the default behavior. The point is to  
give the user a way to go back to an old version, should they wish to.

Consider this scenario:

ImageMagick 6.4.4-10_0 is installed
User types "sudo port upgrade ImageMagick" and upgrades to 6.4.5-0_0
6.4.4-10_0 is deactivated and remains installed
User discovers 6.4.5-0_0 has a fatal flaw [1] and he needs to go back  
to 6.4.4-10_0
No problem: "sudo port deactivate ImageMagick @6.4.5-0_0 && sudo port  
activate ImageMagick @6.4.4-10_0"

If we change the behavior so that the old version is automatically  
uninstalled, the user has to use a rather complicated procedure to  
install the older version again, which is documented here:


Not to mention the fact that reinstalling the old version may take  
considerable time to compile, whereas simply activating an already- 
installed version is quick.

I would rather use up a little more of the user's somewhat cheap disk  
space and make them type one additional command to reclaim it, and  
give the user this easy way to undo an upgrade, than make the user go  
through a whole set of steps to do so. If the user wants to knowingly  
take that risk, he can use the -u switch when upgrading.

[1] http://trac.macports.org/ticket/17037

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