List All the Installed Packages in Ubuntu

August 12, 2009

Sometimes you just can’t remember what packages you’ve already installed, or what version you are currently running. Thankfully you can quickly find out this information from the command line.

$ dpkg --get-selections
acl							install
acpi-support				install
acpid						install
adduser						install
alacarte					install
alsa-base					install
alsa-utils					install
anacron						install
apmd						install
apparmor					install
apparmor-utils				install
apport						install
apport-gtk					install
apt							install
apt-transport-https			install
apt-utils					install
apt-xapian-index			install
aptitude					install
apturl						install

You’ll find that there is far too much information returned by this command and the only way to find exactly what you need is to grep it with a specific query. So for example if you were looking to find out what Python packages you had installed on that system you could use this command:

$ dpkg --get-selections | grep python
libpython2.6					install
python							install
python-apport					install
python-apt						install
python-brlapi					install
python-cairo					install
python-central					install
python-cups						install
python-cupshelpers				install

If you read the man pages on dpkg you’ll find there are many other useful commands you utilize. If you’re trying to track down the location of a package you can use the following command:

$ dpkg -L firefox

This will give you a good idea of where you need to look if you’re trying to find some config files.

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