What's this?

commandlinefu.com is the place to record those command-line gems that you return to again and again.

Delete that bloated snippets file you've been using and share your personal repository with the world. That way others can gain from your CLI wisdom and you from theirs too. All commands can be commented on, discussed and voted up or down.

If you have a new feature suggestion or find a bug, please get in touch via http://commandlinefu.uservoice.com/

Get involved!

You can sign-in using OpenID credentials, or register a traditional username and password.

First-time OpenID users will be automatically assigned a username which can be changed after signing in.

Universal configuration monitoring and system of record for IT.

Stay in the loop…

Follow the Tweets.

Every new command is wrapped in a tweet and posted to Twitter. Following the stream is a great way of staying abreast of the latest commands. For the more discerning, there are Twitter accounts for commands that get a minimum of 3 and 10 votes - that way only the great commands get tweeted.

» http://twitter.com/commandlinefu
» http://twitter.com/commandlinefu3
» http://twitter.com/commandlinefu10

Subscribe to the feeds.

Use your favourite RSS aggregator to stay in touch with the latest commands. There are feeds mirroring the 3 Twitter streams as well as for virtually every other subset (users, tags, functions,…):

Subscribe to the feed for:



May 19, 2015 - A Look At The New Commandlinefu
I've put together a short writeup on what kind of newness you can expect from the next iteration of clfu. Check it out here.
March 2, 2015 - New Management
I'm Jon, I'll be maintaining and improving clfu. Thanks to David for building such a great resource!

Top Tags



Commands tagged dpkg from sorted by
Terminal - Commands tagged dpkg - 49 results
dpkg -S "$(readlink -e $(which w))" | cut -d ':' -f 1
2016-05-18 09:41:29
User: Fox
Functions: cut

Some command names are very different from the name of the package that installed them.

Sometimes, you may want to find out the name of the package that provided a command on a system, so that you can install it on another system.

sudo dpkg -P $(dpkg -l yourPkgName* | awk '$2 ~ /yourPkgName.*/ && $1 ~ /.i/ {print $2}')
2014-08-06 22:40:32
User: wejn
Functions: awk sudo
Tags: dpkg purge

Recently in Debian Wheezy the dpkg command refuses to work with wildcards, so this is the one-liner alternative. (alternative to #13614)

sudo dpkg -P $(sudo dpkg -l yourPkgName* | awk '$2 ~ /yourPkgName.*/' | awk '$1 ~ /.i/' | awk '{print $2}')
2014-08-02 18:14:02
User: woohoo
Functions: awk sudo
Tags: dpkg purge

Recently in Debian Wheezy the dpkg command refuses to work with wildcards, so this is the one-liner alternative.

dpkg-query -W --showformat='${Installed-Size}\t${Package}\n' | sort -nr | less
dpkg -l | grep ^ri | awk '{print $2 " install"}' | sudo dpkg --set-selections
2013-11-23 06:41:18
User: ajmccluskey
Functions: awk grep sudo

If you run dpkg --clear-selections or have otherwise selected installed packages for deinstall, but want to undo it, run this. It will set all installed packages back to installed status so that they won't be removed by commands like "dpkg -Pa"

% sudo yum remove streams-$(uname-r)
dpkg-query --show --showformat='${Package;-50}\t${Installed-Size}\n' `aptitude --display-format '%p' search '?installed!?automatic'` | sort -k 2 -n | grep -v deinstall | awk '{printf "%.3f MB \t %s\n", $2/(1024), $1}'
2013-07-26 23:18:20
User: EvilDennisR
Functions: awk grep sort

The other commands were good, but they included packages that were installed and then removed.

This command only shows packages that are currently installed, sorts smallest to largest, and formats the sizes to be human readable.

sudo apt-get remove $(dpkg -l|awk '/^ii linux-image-/{print $2}'|sed 's/linux-image-//'|awk -v v=`uname -r` 'v>$0'|sed 's/-generic*//'|awk '{printf("linux-headers-%s\nlinux-headers-%s-generic*\nlinux-image-%s-generic*\n",$0,$0,$0)}')
2012-08-15 10:02:12
User: mtron
Functions: awk sed sudo

Remove old kernels (*-generic and *-generic-pae) via apt-get on debian/ubuntu based systems. Tested on ubuntu 10.04 - 12.04.

aptitude remove '?and( ?automatic(?reverse-recommends(?installed)), ?not(?automatic(?reverse-depends(?installed))) )'
apt-config dump
2011-12-13 19:11:02
User: LinuxMan
Functions: apt

Shows all configurations to apt and dpkg, rarely changed, you probably still have the default configuration. Go ahead and explore your configuration if you dare, perhaps change your apt-cache directory, Dir::Cache "var/cache/apt/"; or the names of the log files.

pacof -e rlogin
2011-11-04 13:17:04
User: pipeliner

Uses dpkg -S or apt-file to find the file you want and shows results in various ways. Available at https://github.com/Pipeliner/configs/blob/master/bin/pacof

pacof -xp 'bin/[^/]*mixer'





function whichpkg() { readlink -f "$(which $1)" | xargs --no-run-if-empty dpkg -S; }
2011-10-28 02:53:19
User: b_t
Functions: readlink xargs

This revision to my command (command #8851) was called for when it failed to find the parent

package of 'rlogin', which is really a deep symbolic link to /usr/bin/ssh.

This revision fixes this newfound issue, while ensuring fixes of other older issues work too.

sudo dpkg -i `ls -tr *.deb | tail -n4`
2011-10-09 14:20:11
User: _john
Functions: sudo tail

after kernel build with make deb-pkg, I like to install the 4 newest packages that exist in the directory. Beware: might be fewer for you....

apt-get remove $(dpkg -l | awk "/^ii linux-(image|headers)/ && ! /`uname -r`/ {print \$2}")
2011-10-09 13:58:47
User: _john
Functions: apt awk

since awk was already there one can use it instead of the 2 greps. might not be faster, but fast enough

apt-file search iostat
whichpkg () { dpkg -S $1 | egrep -w $(readlink -f "$(which $1)")$; }
2011-07-17 13:39:56
User: b_t
Functions: egrep readlink
Tags: dpkg readlink

Advanced revision to the command 8776 . This revision follows symbolic links.

The quotation-marks surrounding $(which $1) allows for graceful handling of errors ( ie. readlink does not complain incase 'which' command generates (null) output)

function summpkg { dpkg -s $(dpkg -S $1 | egrep -w $(which $1)$ | awk -F: '{print $1}') ; }
2011-07-05 23:06:37
User: b_t
Functions: awk egrep which
Tags: which dpkg

This version builds on my command 8776 (Find the package a command belongs to on debian-based distros). So if you use that command to find package name then you could alternatively use following for

package summary:

function summpkg { dpkg -s $(whichpkg $1 | awk -F: '{print $1}'); }
function whichpkg { dpkg -S $1 | egrep -w $(which $1)$; }
ssh remotehost 'dpkg --get-selections' | dpkg --set-selections && dselect install
2011-05-12 17:26:43
User: Mozai
Functions: ssh

(also works on Ubuntu) Copies the 'install,' 'hold,' 'deinstall' and 'purge' states of packages on the remote machine to be matched on the local machine. Note: if packages were installed on the local machine that were never installed on the remote machine, they will not be deinstalled by this operation.

apt-get install `ssh [email protected]_you_want_to_clone "dpkg -l | grep ii" | awk '{print $2}'`
sudo aptitude remove -P $(dpkg -l|awk '/^ii linux-image-2/{print $2}'|sed 's/linux-image-//'|awk -v v=`uname -r` 'v>$0'|sed 's/-generic//'|awk '{printf("linux-headers-%s\nlinux-headers-%s-generic\nlinux-image-%s-generic\n",$0,$0,$0)}')
2011-04-25 05:19:57
User: Bonster
Functions: awk sed sudo

Same as 7272 but that one was too dangerous

so i added -P to prompt users to continue or cancel

Note the double space: "...^ii␣␣linux-image-2..."

Like 5813, but fixes two bugs: [1]This leaves the meta-packages 'linux-headers-generic' and 'linux-image-generic' alone so that automatic upgrades work correctly in the future. [2]Kernels newer than the currently running one are left alone (this can happen if you didn't reboot after installing a new kernel).

dpkg -S $( which ls )
dpkg -l python
2011-01-05 06:15:13
User: hackerb9

If the first two letters are "ii", then the package is installed. You can also use wildcards. For example,


dpkg -l openoffice*


Note that dpkg will usually not report packages which are available but uninstalled. If you want to see both which versions are installed and which versions are available, use this command instead:


apt-cache policy python
apt-show-versions | grep '\bpython\b'
awk '{if ($1 ~ /Package/) p = $2; if ($1 ~ /Installed/) printf("%9d %s\n", $2, p)}' /var/lib/dpkg/status | sort -n | tail