Why does certbot-auto on Debian require so many dependencies?

I'm freshly installing certbot-auto on a Debian 7 system. It wants to enable wheezy-backports. Okay, that's fine, because of the libaugeas thing it needs. But then it gives me this list of packages it wants to install:

binutils cpp cpp-4.7 gcc gcc-4.7 libc-dev-bin libc6-dev libexpat1-dev libffi-dev libgmp10 libgomp1 libitm1 libmpc2 libmpfr4 libpython2.7 libquadmath0 libssl-dev linux-libc-dev python-dev python-pkg-resources python-setuptools python-virtualenv python2.7-dev zlib1g-dev

I can understand a few things, like the python-related support packages. But why is gcc being installed!?

I want to install this on a fairly thin web server and there should be no reason for gcc to be present. IF certbot is all python, what's gcc for?

I was thinking it might be a dependency of one of the dependencies, but I count 6 instances of gcc in the source code of certbot-auto. I’m not sure why it needs gcc actually, perhaps someone of the certbot team could shed some light on this :slight_smile:

I can’t really answer the “why” question, but certbot is pretty heavyweight. If you’re able to handle the configuration changes to your web server (specifying the cert and key, enabling TLS, etc.), you might be better off with one of the more lightweight alternative clients. acme.sh seems popular, or I use dehydrated. Both have very minimal dependencies.

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