How to find out which package contains a file
February 18, 2021
How to find out which package a file is in
Sometimes the name of the required utility does not coincide with the name of the package - this is especially the case when one package contains several programs. As a result, a problem arises - to find a package in which the required executable file or header file is present (if you received an error during compilation due to the absence of a specific file).
This article will help you by showing you how to search packages by filename. Moreover, for all packages at once - regardless of whether they are installed or not.
The pkgfile utility looks in the .files metadata generated by repo-add to get information about the files in the packages. By default, the specified target is assumed to be the filename and pkgfile will return packages containing that file. The repositories that pkgfile looks for are determined by those included in /etc/pacman.conf.
To install the program, run the command:
sudo pacman -S pkgfile
Update the saved metadata files.
sudo pkgfile --update
For example, I need to find out which package contains the file finger. Then I run the following command:
As you can see, pkgfile did a great job - the finger executable is in the netkit-bsd-finger package in the blackarch repository.
Using the -l, --list option, you can view the contents of any package:
pkgfile -l netkit-bsd-finger
The target is the package name, not the file name, and the contents of the specified package are returned. This allows the use of repo/package style syntax (eg, “core/pacman”) to limit the search range, but only when --list is used without the --glob or --regex options.
In --search mode and without the --regex or --glob option, pkgfile will try to match the supplied target as the exact filename. If the target contains a '/' character, then an attempt will be made to match the full path. With --regex and --glob search enabled, pkgfile will always match the full path.
In --list mode and without the --regex or --glob option, pkgfile will try to match the supplied target as the exact package name. If the target contains a '/' character, the text before the forward slash will be considered a repository and searches will be limited to that repository only.
All pkgfile options
pkgfile [options] target
Operations: -l, --list list contents of a package -s, --search search for packages containing the target (default) -u, --update update repo files lists Matching: -b, --binaries return only files contained in a bin dir -d, --directories match directories in searches -g, --glob enable matching with glob characters -i, --ignorecase use case insensitive matching -R, --repo <repo> search a singular repo -r, --regex enable matching with regular expressions Output: -q, --quiet output less when listing -v, --verbose output more -w, --raw disable output justification -0, --null null terminate output Downloading: -z, --compress[=type] compress downloaded repos General: -C, --config <file> use an alternate config (default: /etc/pacman.conf) -D, --cachedir <dir> use an alternate cachedir (default: /var/cache/pkgfile) -h, --help display this help and exit -V, --version display the version and exit
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