Provided by: dpkg_1.16.1.2ubuntu7_i386 bug


       dpkg-deb - Debian package archive (.deb) manipulation tool


       dpkg-deb [option...] command


       dpkg-deb packs, unpacks and provides information about Debian archives.

       Use dpkg to install and remove packages from your system.

       You  can also invoke dpkg-deb by calling dpkg with whatever options you
       want to pass to dpkg-deb. dpkg will spot that you wanted  dpkg-deb  and
       run it for you.


       -b, --build directory [archive|directory]
              Creates  a  debian  archive  from  the filesystem tree stored in
              directory. directory must  have  a  DEBIAN  subdirectory,  which
              contains  the control information files such as the control file
              itself. This directory will not appear in the  binary  package's
              filesystem  archive,  but instead the files in it will be put in
              the binary package's control information area.

              Unless you specify --nocheck, dpkg-deb will read  DEBIAN/control
              and  parse  it.  It  will  check  it for syntax errors and other
              problems, and display the  name  of  the  binary  package  being
              built.    dpkg-deb  will  also  check  the  permissions  of  the
              maintainer scripts and other files found in the  DEBIAN  control
              information directory.

              If  no archive is specified then dpkg-deb will write the package
              into the file directory.deb.

              If  the  archive  to  be  created  already  exists  it  will  be

              If  the  second argument is a directory then dpkg-deb will write
              to the file package_version_arch.deb, or package_version.deb  if
              no  Architecture  field  is present in the package control file.
              When a target directory is specified, rather than  a  file,  the
              --nocheck  option  may not be used (since dpkg-deb needs to read
              and parse the package control file to determine  which  filename
              to use).

       -I, --info archive [control-file-name...]
              Provides information about a binary package archive.

              If  no  control-file-names  are  specified  then it will print a
              summary of the contents of the package as well  as  its  control

              If any control-file-names are specified then dpkg-deb will print
              them in the order they were specified; if any of the  components
              weren't  present  it will print an error message to stderr about
              each one and exit with status 2.

       -W, --show archive
              Provides information about  a  binary  package  archive  in  the
              format  specified  by  the  --showformat  argument.  The default
              format displays the package's name  and  version  on  one  line,
              separated by a tabulator.

       -f, --field archive [control-field-name...]
              Extracts control file information from a binary package archive.

              If  no  control-file-fields are specified then it will print the
              whole control file.

              If any are specified then dpkg-deb will print their contents, in
              the order in which they appear in the control file. If more than
              one control-file-field is specified then dpkg-deb  will  precede
              each with its field name (and a colon and space).

              No errors are reported for fields requested but not found.

       -c, --contents archive
              Lists the contents of the filesystem tree archive portion of the
              package  archive.  It  is  currently  produced  in  the   format
              generated by tar's verbose listing.

       -x, --extract archive directory
              Extracts  the  filesystem  tree  from a package archive into the
              specified directory.

              Note that extracting a package to the root  directory  will  not
              result in a correct installation! Use dpkg to install packages.

              directory  (but  not  its parents) will be created if necessary,
              and its permissions  modified  to  match  the  contents  of  the

       -X, --vextract archive directory
              Is  like  --extract  (-x)  with  --verbose  (-v)  which prints a
              listing of the files extracted as it goes.

       -R, --raw-extract archive directory
              Extracts the filesystem tree  from  a  package  archive  into  a
              specified  directory,  and  the control information files into a
              DEBIAN subdirectory of the specified directory.

              The target directory (but not its parents) will  be  created  if

       --fsys-tarfile archive
              Extracts  the  filesystem  tree  data  from a binary package and
              sends it to standard output in tar format. Together with  tar(1)
              this  can  be  used  to extract a particular file from a package
              archive.   The  input   archive   will   always   be   processed

       -e, --control archive [directory]
              Extracts  the  control  information files from a package archive
              into the specified directory.

              If no directory is specified then a subdirectory DEBIAN  in  the
              current directory is used.

              The  target  directory  (but not its parents) will be created if

       -h, --help
              Show the usage message and exit.

              Show the version and exit.


              This option is used to specify the format of the  output  --show
              will  produce.  The  format  is a string that will be output for
              each package listed.

              The string may reference any status field  using  the  "${field-
              name}"  form,  a list of the valid fields can be easily produced
              using -I on the same package.  A  complete  explanation  of  the
              formatting   options   (including  escape  sequences  and  field
              tabbing) can be found in the  explanation  of  the  --showformat
              option in dpkg-query(1).

              The default for this field is "${Package}\t${Version}\n".

              Specify  which  compression  level  to  use  on  the  compressor
              backend, when building a package (default  is  9  for  gzip  and
              bzip2, 6 for xz and lzma).

              Specify  which  compression type to use when building a package.
              Allowed values are gzip, xz, bzip2, lzma, and none  (default  is

       --new  Ensures that dpkg-deb builds a `new' format archive. This is the

       --old  Forces dpkg-deb to build  an  `old'  format  archive.  This  old
              archive  format is less easily parsed by non-Debian tools and is
              now obsolete; its only use  is  when  building  packages  to  be
              parsed  by versions of dpkg older than 0.93.76 (September 1995),
              which was released as i386 a.out only.

              Inhibits  dpkg-deb  --build's  usual  checks  on  the   proposed
              contents  of  an archive. You can build any archive you want, no
              matter how broken, this way.

       -v, --verbose
              Enables verbose output. This currently  only  affects  --extract
              making it behave like --vextract.

       -D, --debug
              Enables debugging output. This is not very interesting.


       TMPDIR If set, dpkg-deb will use it as the directory in which to create
              temporary files and directories.


       dpkg-deb -I package1.deb package2.deb does the wrong thing.

       There is no authentication on .deb files; in fact, there isn't  even  a
       straightforward   checksum.   (Higher  level  tools  like  APT  support
       authenticating .deb packages retrieved from  a  given  repository,  and
       most  packages  nowadays  provide  an  md5sum control file generated by
       debian/rules. Though this is not directly supported by the lower  level

       Do  not  attempt to use just dpkg-deb to install software! You must use
       dpkg proper to ensure that all the files are correctly placed  and  the
       package's scripts run and its status and contents recorded.


       deb(5), deb-control(5), dpkg(1), dselect(1).


       Copyright © 1995-1996 Ian Jackson

       This  is free software; see the GNU General Public Licence version 2 or
       later for copying conditions. There is NO WARRANTY.