Debian mirrors 

Debian worldwide mirror sites


If you find some broken dependencies or bugs in these packages, tell me and don't report bugs to the BTS.

Christian Marillat

Temporarily disable a repository 

Newsgroups: gmane.linux.debian.user
Date: Fri, 14 Sep 2007

Is it possible to temporarily disable a repository? If so, how?

I'm using ffmpeg from debian-multimedia repository, but I want to use the version from official Debian lenny repository instead temporarily. What's the easiest way of doing that?



$ apt-cache policy ffmpeg
  Installed: 3:20070719-0.0
  Candidate: 3:20070719-0.0
  Version table:
 *** 3:20070719-0.0 0
        600 testing/main Packages
        100 /var/lib/dpkg/status
     0.cvs20070307-6 0
        600 lenny/main Packages
         50 unstable/main Packages
% apt-get -t lenny install ffmpeg
Reading package lists... Done
Building dependency tree
Reading state information... Done
ffmpeg is already the newest version.
0 upgraded, 0 newly installed, 0 to remove and 1126 not upgraded.

Temporarily disable a repository 


apt-get install ffmpeg/lenny


apt-get install ffmpeg=0.cvs20070307-6

If you want to change priorities for an entire archive then you probably have to use package pinning (see the manpage for apt_preferences).

Florian Kulzer

Rescuing systems using the Debian snapshot server

by Steve on Mon 28 Aug 2006

One of the unofficial Debian project resources which doesn't get the attention it deserves is the Debian Snapshot site. The site contains a mirror of old Debian packages, which can be very useful for system recovery.

In most normal cases you won't ever need to use it, unless you're wanting to compare two different package versions to see changes, or do other non-standard things. However when you do need to use it you'll learn what a big lifesaver it is!

The biggest use for the site, for me, has been for recovering from broken package updates. Whilst these are rare in the Debian Stable and Testing releases they can be an issue when running Debian unstable.

As a cromulent example the Debian Xen packages available in unstable have recently become broken - they panic on boot. Reverting the package was difficult since the working copy had vanished from the Debian package repository, but the snapshot service allowed me to recover easily.

In my case this was the only option since the local package cache (in /var/cache/apt/archives) had been cleaned already - and the previous package was unavailable on the Debian mirror.

Thankfully kernel packages are nicely built such that you can have multiple versions installed simultaneously. This is a good thing as the Debian packaging system generally doesn't support package downgrades.

This is the situation I was in:

Had I merely wanted to recover the machine I would have installed a non-Xen kernel upon the system and been back up and running. But without Xen I couldn't complete several important jobs, so I really wanted to revert back to the non-broken version of the package.

This is the point where I remembered that the Debian snapshot server existed.

Searching the archive for the old revision gave me some lines to add to my sources.list file:

deb pool linux-2.6
deb-src pool linux-2.6

Using these lines recovery became simple:

apt-get update
apt-get install linux-headers-2.6.16-1-xen \
               linux-image-2.6.16-1-xen-686 \

Once those downloads completed I could rebuild my deleted initrd image and reboot into a working Xen system.

Of course if you deliberately run "older" packages you might discover that these get upgraded the next time you run "apt-get upgrade". Thankfully this is simple to avoid by holding your packages.

Rescuing systems using the Debian snapshot server 

deb unstable main contrib non-free

^^^^ this is a good way of ensuring a safty net. :-)

by Anonymous (217.156.xx.xx) on Thu 14 Sep 2006

documented on: 2007.07.30




% apt-spy -d stable -a North-America -w /tmp/ -n 10
Writing new sources.list file: /etc/apt/sources.list
writing topfile: /tmp/
% apt-spy -d etch -i /tmp/
Benchmarking FTP...
                Error: The requested URL returned error: 404
Benchmarking HTTP...
                Downloaded 4073916 bytes in 12.85 seconds
                Download speed: 309.65 kB/sec
Benchmarking FTP...
                Error: The requested URL returned error: 404
Benchmarking HTTP...
                Downloaded 4067495 bytes in 12.99 seconds
                Download speed: 305.85 kB/sec
% cat /etc/apt/sources.list
# sources.list generated by apt-spy v3.1
deb stable main
deb-src stable main
deb stable/updates main
% cat /tmp/



-d distribution Debian distribution to use. Sensible values would be `stable', `testing' or `unstable'. This value is directly used in the generated sources.list, and is required unless updating.

-a area This will cause only servers in the specified area to be benchmarked. By default, valid values for area are `Africa', `Asia', `Europe', `North-America', `Oceania' and `South-America'.

-w file write a number of top servers to file in a format suitable for use with the -i option. The number of servers to output can be specified with the -n option, and defaults to 5.

-n number the number of top servers to write with the -w option.

-i file use file as input for apt-spy. You should generate this input file using the -w option.



$ netselect-apt testing
Using distribution testing.
Retrieving the list of mirrors from
Choosing a main Debian mirror using netselect.
Running netselect to choose 1 out of 275 addresses.
netselect was unable to find a mirror, this probably means that
you are behind a firewall and it is blocking traceroute.


Choose the fastest Debian mirror with netselect

netselect-apt will choose the fastest Debian mirror by downloading the full mirror list and uses netselect to find the best one. netselect-apt writes a sources.list(5) file that can be used with apt(8).


Newsgroups:  comp.os.linux.misc
Date:        Mon, 24 Nov 2003 03:37:11 -0500
> I'd like to use apt-spy to find the fastest http or ftp servers for the
> testing distro of debian.  First, i ran apt-spy update -m ~/mirrors
> Then, apt-spy -d testing -o ~/my_sources -m ~/mirrors -a 'North-America'
> But when i run this, i only get output from 7 sources...

Try using "-e" with a number greater than 7, and changing /etc/apt-spy.conf so that under "North-America" US is first (if you are in the US.)

Bill Marcum


> But when i run this, i only get output from 7 sources...

There seems to be some glitch, perhaps with the "North-America" switch. You've only tested Canadian mirrors. (,, and are Canadian even though they're not .ca domains.)

Anyway, you'll likely get better info on one of the Debian mailing lists.

John-Paul Stewart