Synaptic was designed specifically to manage packages, with apt (advanced packaging tool). The only significant difference with usual working method through the terminal — graphical interface that allows you to replace the input of commands by clicking the mouse. Based this software on GTK+ (GIMP ToolKit) is a cross — platform library of interface elements, one of the major competitors Qt.
Personally I have nothing against the terminal. But, let this handy tool that allows you to virtually control the entire computer, it has one drawback — not knowing the commands will not do anything. Therefore, Synaptic perfect for those who do not like to strain over small things. The main window is organized in such a way that to understand it for a couple of minutes from scratch. Classic toolbar at the top and 2 workspaces left and right. At the left there is one great feature is the option under which classifies the packets. That is, under the list of categories has 5 buttons — partitions, status, origin, special filters and search results. What you will click on this option and will be divided into sections files available. And in the list on the right displays all the packages that are selected in the left list of categories.
Also on the top panel there is a search bar, and besides her buttons allowing you to perform some operations. When you click on the "Reload" button will update the indexes of all repositories, and click "Apply" need to apply all the changes.
Another advantage Synaptic are hot keys that are assigned to the basic options. In my opinion, often uses the following: Ctrl + R — to send the request to the repository and update the list of available packages; Ctrl + F — go to search; Ctrl + O — open the properties of the selected package; Ctrl + I, Ctrl + U, Delete, Shift + Delete key to mark the selected package for installation, regular updates and complete removal, respectively; Ctrl + P — apply all actions. I highly recommend to use these hot keys, as the program allows you to interact with the list of packages, highlighting any number of its elements that it is much easier to do using the keyboard than the mouse or touchpad.
Installed packages are marked with green squares, and not installed - white. Change the status of a package by pressing the right mouse button on its name in the list and selecting the desired action:
To remove a package can be in one of two ways: either simply delete the package files, or delete them along with any custom settings related to the deleted package. These methods differ is this: many programs create home folders for user files with your own settings so here, with a simple removal of these programs will be deleted without user's settings, while a full with them.
Synaptic and other package management tools, automatically monitors the resolution of all dependencies and liquidation of various conflicts. Moreover, when performing any action Synaptic will give you a window with a detailed description of the changes.
Remember that the program is running with administrator privileges. Make changes if you are sure what you are doing!
May the Force be with you,