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apt and dpkg

Written on March 23, 2004

I’ve been needlessly lax in my work here on nerd.cx, as is my wont. I’m much prefer to be active here, adding all of my wee discoveries and tribulations, so I have a better record of them. Perhaps when school calms down.

Anyway, after some recent computer troubles, I was chatting with emma and she mentioned that she uses some command to list her installed packages, and from there can reinstall her system in one big chunk. To me, with two computers, this is a fabulous idea, because if I need to reinstall one of them, I can do it from the installed software image of the other. Very pleasing.

After some poking about I found these two commands, which I think are going to make my life a bunch easier: dpkg --list and apt-show-versions -u. The first is the one that tells me what all I’ve installed – not as easy a thing to remember, even on a stripped-down system, and it is likely to be more than you think. The second is quite handy if, like me, you don’t want to run apt-get upgrade blind. It should be good.

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