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I am a bit confused on exactly how the emacs package management works. I currently run emacs 24.3 on Ubuntu 12.04 LTS. I just ran the command package-menu-mark-upgrades which marks all the packages that have available upgrades. Then I executed to install these upgrades.

However, upon visiting the .emacs.d/elpa directory I noticed that the older versions of my installed packages still existed. For example I have two ess packages with a bunch of numbers at the end which give the date of their latest build.

Is this typical behavior? Or do I need to run another command to delete these obsolete packages?

Thanks for all the help!

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I think that is the correct behavior you are seeing -- package manager is not going to delete things on your computer. This is a good thing, because I frequently modify the sources to custom tailor them to my needs. Of course, folders have creation / modification dates . . . –  lawlist Aug 31 '13 at 14:56

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That is not the expected behavior. The following is the function documention for package-menu-mark-upgrade on GNU Emacs 24.3.1:

Mark all upgradable packages in the Package Menu. For each installed package with a newer version available, place an (I)nstall flag on the available version and a (D)elete flag on the installed version. A subsequent M-x package-menu-execute call will upgrade the package.

I can confirm that update a package will delete (or at least attempt to delete) the old version of the package.

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