Synaptic (software)

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Package Manager
Original author(s)Alfredo Kojima, Gustavo Niemeyer and Michael Vogt
Developer(s)Canonical Ltd
Initial releaseNovember 13, 2001; 21 years ago (2001-11-13)
Stable release
0.91.3 / February 11, 2023; 3 months ago (2023-02-11)
Written inC, C++, Python
Operating systemDebian and derivatives
Available inEnglish
TypePackage manager
LicenseGNU GPLv2[1] Edit this at Wikidata

Synaptic is a GTK-based graphical user interface for the APT package manager used by the Debian Linux distribution and its derivatives.[2] Synaptic is usually used on systems based on deb packages but can also be used on systems based on RPM packages. It can be used to install, remove and upgrade software packages and to add repositories.


  • Install, remove, upgrade and downgrade single and multiple packages
  • System-wide upgrade
  • Package search utility
  • Manage package repositories
  • Find packages by name, description and several other attributes
  • Select packages by status, section, name or a custom filter
  • Sort packages by name, status, size or version
  • Browse available online documentation related to a package
  • Download the latest changelog of a package
  • Lock packages to the current version
  • Force the installation of a specific package version
  • Undo/Redo of selections
  • Built-in terminal emulator for the package manager
  • Allows creation of download scripts (see Usage for more details)

It also has the following features:

  • Configure packages through the debconf system
  • Xapian-based fast search
  • Get screenshots from


The package manager enables the user to install, to upgrade or to remove software packages. To install or remove a package a user must search or navigate to the package, then mark it for installation or removal. Changes are not applied instantly; the user must first mark all changes and then apply them.


Synaptic development was funded by the brazilian company Conectiva,[3] which asked Alfredo Kojima, then an employee, to write a graphical front-end for APT, continuing the work initiated with the creation of the APT RPM back-end, apt-rpm.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "COPYING".
  2. ^ García, Joaquín (17 March 2013). "Synaptic, un gestor debianita en Ubuntu" [Synaptic, a debianic manager software for Ubuntu]. Ubunlog (in Spanish). Archived from the original on 17 August 2013. Retrieved 6 August 2019. ¿Qué es Synaptic? Synaptic es un gestor de paquetes, de programas visual, es decir, que cuenta con una interfaz e instalamos a golpe de click en vez de escribir como hacemos en la terminal.
  3. ^ "Synaptic Package Manager Review". Softpedia. Based on this library, Conectiva company considered the development of a tool that should fuse the point-and-click simplicity of a graphical UI with the power of the apt-get command line.

External links[edit]