brltty depends on ubuntu-mate-desktop

Tony Baechler tony at
Wed Sep 2 11:22:41 UTC 2015

Probably others already answered this, but here goes anyway.

On 9/1/2015 2:43 PM, John G Heim wrote:
> I have a problem with brltty. The main problem is that it doesn't work. I
> just don't get anything on my braille display. I know the display is working
> because I can boot with a thumb drive and it works. I thought I'd try
> uninstalling brltty and reinstalling it but when I did that, it wanted to
> uninstall the mate desktop as well.  In other words, if I type, "dpkg
> --purge brltty', it says it says that it can't do that because I'd have to
> uninstall ubuntu-mate-desktop first. If I ask it to show me the dependencies
> for brltty, ubuntu-mate-desktop is not listed.

No, but brltty-x11 is listed.  You can safely purge brltty, brltty-x11 and 
ubuntu-mate-desktop.  The later depends on brltty which depends or 
recommends (I'm not recalling which) brltty-x11, so there is your problem. 
The good news is ubuntu-mate-desktop is a metapackage, so you can safely 
remove it without removing your full desktop.  I would not use dpkg for 
this.  Instead, install Aptitude and do this:

aptitude -q purge brltty

> Is there a way to force dpkg to recalculate it's dependencies? It has to be
> that the dependency date is messed up.

Not that I know of, but it's not necessary.  See above.  If you remove 
pulseaudio, it also removes the desktop metapackage.  It's mostly harmless.

However, you have another option.  Run the following commands:

dpkg --force-all --purge brltty brltty-x11
aptitude -q install brltty brltty-x11

That won't remove the desktop metapackage.

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