1 unstable release

0.1.0 Mar 3, 2019


2.5K SLoC

Faux' apt

Build status Build status

This is a library-like tool for interacting with Debian/Ubuntu package metadata, like one would expect from apt or aptitude. These tools are not arranged as libraries, however, so it is rather hard to drive them in this manner.

This project is pure, safe Rust, and runs fine on Windows, OSX, etc. It does not need root, unless you want it to write to root-only directories.

It does not currently contain a way to install packages, so cannot be used as a replacement for apt.

It is intended to give access to the data when necessary, for example:

let mut fapt = System::cache_only()?;
commands::add_sources_entries_from_str(&mut fapt, src_line)?;
commands::add_builtin_keys(&mut fapt);

for block in commands::all_blocks(&fapt)? {

This can be seen in one of the examples:

% cargo run -q --example \
   list_source_packages deb-src https://deb.debian.org/debian buster main non-free
Downloading: https://deb.debian.org/debian/dists/buster/InRelease ... complete.
Downloading: https://deb.debian.org/debian/dists/buster/main/source/by-hash/SHA256/c3a1781dc47ba30d2c29eafd556d36917bb180c1f55c4862fedd48da28a2042f ... complete.

There is also support for parsing these HashMap<String, Strings>s into a proper object.

This difference between the two APIs can be seen in the list_latest_source_map (for the map API), and the list_latest_source_obj (for the object API). The map API is more stable, as it does less work, and leaves parsing and error handling to you.

Data model

Here is an example sources list entry on an amd64 machine:

deb     https://deb.debian.org/debian sid main contrib
deb-src https://deb.debian.org/debian sid main contrib

This is interpreted as:

  1. Download https://deb.debian.org/debian/dists/sid/Release. This is called the ReleaseFile.
  2. Look through it for entries named the following. Each of these is called a Listing:
    • main/binary-amd64/Packages
    • contrib/binary-amd64/Packages
    • main/source/Sources
    • contrib/source/Sources
  3. Download them all.

This result (ignoring verification and compression) is now a list of Blocks.

Each Block contains multiple Fields.

Each group of Fields probably describes a Package, either a source or binary package.


~610K SLoC