> these days the only reason you'll see more incompatibilities and messed dependencies for *rpm than for *deb is that there's a lot of different distros using rpm, and basically only debian using deb.
There's a lot of distributions using .deb, actually; the difference is that Debian has an extensive packaging policy, which anyone can read and use. So all the third party distributions have packages that more or less follow that policy. The other distributors also usually work with Debian to the extent that their goals allow. Policy is the real strength of Debian's packaging system, and the reason that you don't find many incompatible third party .debs.
> "urpmi gimp" does exactly the same thing as "apt-get install gimp" and urpmi --auto-select does the same as whatever command the debianers use to update all packages to the latest version.
Last time I checked, RPM (and URPMI) had no equivalents of APT pinning (manage specific sets of packages from other sources), large-scale downgrading, deborphan and debfoster (automatically remove unneeded packages), auto-apt (automatically install packages when something on the system requests a file from a package), debhelper, (a consistent way to create packages), and a dozen other tools that make up the Debian packaging system.
It's true that most other distributions have caught up to the level of sophistication that Debian's packaging tools were at -- 4 years ago. Installing and upgrading packages is the *bare minimum* a package manager should be able to do.
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