I frequently find myself missing a program, man page, or other file when working on my Ubuntu 8.04 system. Is there any simple way to look up what package contains a given file (whether it is installed already or not)? Maybe some obscure option for apt or dpkg?
apt-file search filename
apt-file search /path/to/file
sudo apt-get install apt-file
You will need to update its database before you can use it:
sudo apt-file update
9FYI: apt-file seems to depend on Contents-amd64.gz provided by repositories. And not all 3rd party repos provide this file.– JokesterMar 25, 2015 at 6:27
4It did not work for me. I updated the database but it does not return anything.
dpkg -Sworks as described below.– NorthysDec 28, 2016 at 12:36
1In most cases you will not need to install a non-standard package (apt-file) and get away with using the pre-installed one (dpkg). See top voted answer. Oct 17, 2019 at 12:50
(Debian/Ubuntu) Discover what package a file belongs to:
dpkg -S /usr/bin/ls
'dpkg -S' just matches the string you supply it, so just using 'ls' as an argument matches any file from any package that has 'ls' anywhere in the filename. So usually it's a good idea to use an absolute path. You can see in the second example that 12 thousand files that are known to dpkg match the bare string 'ls'.
39That is only if the files already installed– John TJul 22, 2009 at 19:16
26In contrast to
apt-file, this also finds the package to a file if it was installed manually via
dpkg -i!– taniusFeb 28, 2015 at 5:09
2Weird, this didn't work for me:
dpkg-query: no path found matching pattern /usr/bin/java, though there is a file at
/usr/bin/java– nnybyMay 23, 2018 at 17:28
@nnyby See comment of Pablo A– vogOct 2, 2019 at 10:59
packages.debian.org is what I always use to accomplish this task. It is superior over apt-file because it can find parts of filenames as well. It's also linked up to the main packages list which will list descriptions, bugs, etc. All in all a good website. Not as useful from the command line, but still quite useful.
For speed, I bookmarked the url:
in Firefox, and added "debfind" as a keyword (click "more" in the bookmark manager with it hilighted), so I can just type "debfind " and it will work. You can change 'suite' it from unstable to stable or testing if you like, for other versions of the distribution.
1It doesn't work with custom repos though.– Ctrl-CJun 29, 2018 at 11:40
1Poor choice in regards to automation. Aug 1, 2018 at 16:56
You can also use dlocate. From the man page;
$ dlocate [ PATTERN ] List all records where either the package name or the filename matches PATTERN.
I found Wajig...
wajig whichpackage /path/to/file
wajig whichpackage /etc/apt/sources.list
Wajig is a handy command line or console tool which wraps all the apt-get, dpkg goodness that you never wanted to learn. .
To install wajig use:
apt-get install wajig
That command 'whichpackage' itself depends on apt-file
you will still need to update its database before you can use it: - I don't know yet if wajig update whixh does an apt-get update also updates the file cache, but I expect it may.
sudo wajig update sudo apt-file update
( and Super Cow, Easter egss ? ! )
Simmilar to jamuraa's answer for Debian, you can also go to http://packages.ubuntu.com/ for Ubuntu. You'll have to scroll down a bit to find the "Search the contents of packages" searchbox where you can enter the path of a file.
The command-not-found package gives you hints about potential commands and the name of the debian package. It works by typing the command in the bash shell and looking at its output.
For example if the command name is known:
zer@ivy:~ 10:45 $ zsh5 The program 'zsh5' is currently not installed. To run 'zsh5' please ask your administrator to install the package 'zsh' zsh5: command not found
and if the command is not known, some guesses are applied:
zer@ivy:~ 09:46 $ zsh No command 'zsh' found, did you mean: Command 'lsh' from package 'lsh-client' (main) Command 'osh' from package 'omake' (main) Command 'ysh' from package 'libyaml-shell-perl' (main) Command 'ssh' from package 'openssh-client' (main) Command 'vsh' from package 'crystalspace' (main) Command 'dsh' from package 'dsh' (main) Command 'ash' from package 'ash' (main) Command 'msh' from package 'nmh' (main) Command 'zssh' from package 'zssh' (main) Command 'qsh' from package 'gridengine-client' (main) Command 'sh' from package 'dash' (main) Command 'bsh' from package 'bsh' (main) zsh: command not found
This does not work for arbitrary files however, like the OP requested.– userMar 12, 2015 at 12:26
This is a problematic tip if the program does harmful things and IS installed. Adding
--helpat the end would help a bit. If adding
-hat the end would make this safe enough I would recommend, but even so it is not a good way to achieve what the OP asks.– DrBecoApr 27, 2016 at 15:51
Try searching for files using http://www.kodkast.com/applications/find-which-package-file-belongs-to
This is an application to search for files which are contained in different rpms/linux packages, and is very useful when you dont even have the rpm installed on your machine.
Downvote: The link is broken and the link seems to be for RPM packages in the first place.– tripleeeApr 17, 2018 at 7:01
dpkg -S /path/to/fileif you have the package installed.