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Red Hat and Debian GNU/Linux Package Managers
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Package States and Selection States

The possible states that a package can be in are:

config-files

Only the configuration files for the package are present on the system.

half-configured

The package is unpacked and configuration was started but not completed.

half-installed

Installation was started but not completed.

installed

The package is unpacked and configured.

not-installed

The package is not installed.

unpacked

The package is unpacked but not configured.

The possible package selection states are:

deinstall

The package has been selected for deinstallation (i.e., for removal of everything but configuration files).

install

The package has been selected for installation.

purge

The package has been selected to be purged (i.e., for removal of everything including the configuration files).

Package Flags

There are two possible package flags that can be set for a package. They are:

hold

The package is not to be handled by dpkg, unless forced with the --force-hold option.

reinst-required

The package is broken and needs to be reinstalled. Such a package cannot be removed, unless forced with the --force-reinstreq option.

Scripts

In addition to the commands described in the next subsection, several shell and Perl scripts are included with the package manager for use in building packages:

dpkg-buildpackage

Help automate package building. Shell script.

dpkg-distaddfile

Add an entry for a file to debian/files. Perl script.

dpkg-genchanges

Generate an upload control file from the information in an unpacked, built, source tree and the files it has generated. Perl script.

dpkg-gencontrol

Read information from an unpacked source tree and display a binary package control file on standard output. Perl script.

dpkg-name

Rename Debian packages to their full package names. Shell script.

dpkg-parsechangelog

Read and parse the changelog from an unpacked source tree and write the information to standard output in machine-readable form. Perl script.

dpkg-scanpackages

Create a Packages file from a tree of binary packages. The Packages file is used by dselect to provide a list of packages available for installation. Perl script.

dpkg-shlibdeps

Calculate shared library dependencies for named executables. Perl script.

dpkg-source

Pack and unpack Debian source archives. Perl script.

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