Ubuntu – How to list all configuration files for an already installed package


I am running Ubuntu 12.10 and, if possible, I would like to get the list of configuration files available for a given package that is already installed.

I would prefer to do this using dpkg or apt if possible, but no problem if other tools such as aptitude or dselect are needed/recommended.

Best Answer

  • There's no need to use anything other than cat, if I understood your intention correctly:

    cat /var/lib/dpkg/info/<package>.conffiles

    should give you what you're after. For instance for package zsh:

    % cat /var/lib/dpkg/info/zsh.conffiles

    Regarding a case where there's no such file for a given package - it's up to the package maintainer to designate certain files as configuration. If this hasn't been done properly, you should file a bug where appropriate.

    In such cases you have a couple of options.

    1. List files belonging to the package that are in /etc/:

      dpkg -L package | grep '/etc'
    2. Fetch and inspect the source package to find out how it was compiled (which should also show you where it expects its configuration files to be located).

      apt-get source package
      less package-x.y.z/debian/rules
    3. Look up the upstream project page to find documentation.