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Following instructions to migrate from Wheezy to Jessie, I updated my sources, apt-get update;apt-get upgrade;apt-get dist-upgrade (not all at once, but enough to check that everything was fine), and rebooted my VPS.

I started working on switching from php5 to php7, removing php packages, and suddenly I get to the point where this starts happening, through every apt:

The following packages will be REMOVED:
  linux-image-2.6.32-5-amd64
0 upgraded, 0 newly installed, 1 to remove and 0 not upgraded.
1 not fully installed or removed.
After this operation, 104 MB disk space will be freed.
Do you want to continue? [Y/n]
(Reading database ... 33495 files and directories currently installed.)
Removing linux-image-2.6.32-5-amd64 (2.6.32-48squeeze6) ...
Examining /etc/kernel/postrm.d .
run-parts: executing /etc/kernel/postrm.d/initramfs-tools 2.6.32-5-amd64 /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.32-5-amd64
update-initramfs: Deleting /boot/initrd.img-2.6.32-5-amd64
run-parts: executing /etc/kernel/postrm.d/zz-update-grub 2.6.32-5-amd64 /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.32-5-amd64
Searching for GRUB installation directory ... found: /boot/grub
run-parts: /etc/kernel/postrm.d/zz-update-grub exited with return code 1
Failed to process /etc/kernel/postrm.d at /var/lib/dpkg/info/linux-image-2.6.32-5-amd64.postrm line 234, <STDIN> line 2.
dpkg: error processing package linux-image-2.6.32-5-amd64 (--remove):
 subprocess installed post-removal script returned error exit status 2
Errors were encountered while processing:
 linux-image-2.6.32-5-amd64
E: Sub-process /usr/bin/dpkg returned an error code (1)

I tried holding it, in the hopes apt would just ignore it since I can't seem to do anything about it, and I got

E: Can't find a source to download version '2.6.32-48squeeze6' of 'linux-image-2.6.32-5-amd64:amd64'

As far as I can tell, the package in question isn't installed.

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dpkg --purge --force-remove-reinstreq linux-image-2.6.32-5-amd64

This purges the package from the system. Cleared up the issue.

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  • 2
    You need to add an explanation of the command to meet the quality standards of this site. – kasperd Dec 12 '15 at 22:23
  • it's true… but then I was very happy to find this answer after a long search… – MichaelC May 1 '19 at 13:20

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