Debian Package Management Overview

Each Debian package contains program and configuration files, documentation, and noted dependencies on other packages. The names of Debian packages have three common elements, including:

Package name

A Debian package name is short and descriptive. When multiple words are used in the name, they are separated by hyphens. Typical names include binutils, kernel-source, and telnet.

Version number

Each package has a version. Most package versions are the same as that of the software they contain. The format of package versions varies from package to package, but most are numeric (major.minor.patchlevel).

A file extension

By default, all Debian packages end with the .deb file extension.

Figure 5-1 illustrates a Debian package name.

The structure of a Debian GNU/Linux package name
Figure 5-1. The structure of a Debian GNU/Linux package name

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