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Sometimes it does this:

After this operation, 713kB of additional disk space will be used.
Do you want to continue [Y/n]?

And sometimes not, and just assumes 'yes' and downloads automatically (I can't paste the actual output because I don't know how to reproduce it).


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If you want to know how to force it to not bother prompting you ever, see this answer… – Robin Winslow Oct 11 '12 at 12:16
up vote 20 down vote accepted

The confirmation dialog will not only appear when you would install packages you didn't ask for, but also in the following cases:

  • Installing packages that you didn't specifically want to install
  • Removal of essential packages
  • Changing a held package (a held package is one you want to keep in the version currently installed)

You can override it with one of the following switches:

  • -y
  • -yes
  • --assume-yes

Which acts as if you answered yes to all those questions. However, prompts for essential packages will still be displayed for safety reasons.

Essential packages:

Essential is defined as the minimal set of functionality that must be available and usable on the system at all times, even when packages are in an unconfigured (but unpacked) state.

Thanks to @Liori for pointing that out.

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Essential packages: – liori May 23 '11 at 13:18
@slhck is there any way to change this in .bashrc or something, so I don't have to manually type -y all the time? – Robin Winslow Oct 11 '12 at 12:09
To force it to always answer "yes" without you having to do -y see this answer:… – Robin Winslow Oct 11 '12 at 12:16
@RobinWinslow You could simply alias the apt-get install command to alias agi=apt-get install -y or similar. – slhck Oct 11 '12 at 12:25
yes I thought of that, it just seems a bit messy because of all the different options I might potentially want to pass to apt-get with the -y option. I prefer the solution in the other question of adding a config file to /etc/apt/apt.conf.d/ – Robin Winslow Oct 11 '12 at 12:32

If it needs to install more than the packages you explicitly asked for, it'll ask for permission, else it won't, i believe. If its an annoyance, you can use the -y switch to automatically assume yes.

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