Package format

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A package format is a type of archive containing files and additional metadata found on packages.[1] While the archive file format itself is unchanged, package formats additionally specify the contents, such as requiring a manifest file or certain directory layout.

The term is particularly used on Unix systems, and there are several formats available, both for Linux distributions and BSD systems, though the concept also includes pkg files on Mac OS X, MSI files on Windows, JAR files for Java, among others.

These are the principal kinds of package:

Packages may be converted to one type to another with software such as Alien.

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