Posted September 13, 2023 by Rohith and Anusha ‐ 3 min read

If you've ever used Ubuntu or any other Debian-based Linux distribution, you've likely encountered the term APT or Advanced Packaging Tool. APT is a powerful package management system that simplifies software installation, updates, and maintenance on your Ubuntu system.

What is APT?

  • APT, which stands for Advanced Packaging Tool, is a command-line package management system used by Ubuntu and many other Debian-based Linux distributions.

  • It streamlines the process of installing, updating, and removing software packages on your Ubuntu system.

  • APT is designed to handle software dependencies efficiently, ensuring that all necessary libraries and components are installed or upgraded automatically.

Key Features of APT

Dependency Resolution

  • APT automatically resolves and manages software dependencies, saving you the headache of manually installing required libraries or packages.

Repository System

  • APT uses repositories to store and manage software packages.

  • Ubuntu maintains its official repositories, but you can also add third-party repositories for additional software.

Version Control

  • APT tracks the version of each installed package, enabling you to upgrade or downgrade packages as needed.


  • APT ensures the integrity of packages by verifying digital signatures, helping protect your system from malicious software.

Basic APT Commands

Let’s explore some essential APT commands that every Ubuntu user should know:

Update Package Lists

To ensure you have the latest information about available packages, run:

sudo apt update

Upgrade Installed Packages

Upgrade all installed packages to their latest versions with:

sudo apt upgrade

Install a Package

To install a new package, use:

sudo apt install package-name

Remove a Package

Uninstall a package while keeping its configuration files with:

sudo apt remove package-name

Purge a Package

Completely remove a package, including its configuration files, with:

sudo apt purge package-name

Search for Packages

To search for packages by name or description, use:

apt search search-term

List Installed Packages

View a list of installed packages with:

dpkg --list

Advanced APT Usage

  • APT also supports more advanced features like pinning, package locking, and using third-party repositories.

These capabilities allow you to customize your Ubuntu system further. Here are some additional tips:

Pin Packages

  • You can prioritize packages from specific repositories using pinning.

  • This can be helpful when you want to prefer packages from official repositories over third-party ones.

Lock Packages

  • You can lock specific packages to prevent them from being upgraded or removed accidentally.

  • This is especially useful for critical software or custom configurations.

Adding Repositories

  • You can add third-party repositories to access additional software.

  • Be cautious and ensure that you trust the source when adding repositories.


  • Advanced Packaging Tool (APT) is a fundamental part of Ubuntu’s package management system, making it easy to install, update, and maintain software on your system.

  • Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced Ubuntu user, understanding APT commands and its capabilities is essential for managing your Linux environment effectively.

  • With APT, you have the power to customize your Ubuntu system to meet your specific needs while maintaining stability and security.

quick-references blog apt advanced-packaging-tool

Subscribe For More Content