Scroll to navigation

install_packages(8) System Manager's Manual install_packages(8)


install_packages - install FAI configured packages




This command is only called internally by FAI and not directly by the user.

install_packages is a Perl script written for FAI to selectively install, hold, remove, or purge packages or tasks. Its function is to parse the package_config files based on the class definitions of the client. For example, if the client belonged to the SMTPSERVER class, install_packages would parse ../package_config/SMTPSERVER for instructions on what packages to install, hold, remove, or purge.


Only download packages instead of installing them. Variable $aptoptions must be set.
Show help, version and summary of options.
Show list of all available commands for the file in package_config.
Print only the list of all packages that would be installed, then exit.
Print the list of all packages with version number that would be installed, then exit.
Install only MAX packages at a time. Same as setting the shell environment variable MAXPACKAGES.
Dry run. Do not execute installation commands, just print them.
Do not check package names whether they are valid and remove unknown packages from the list. You can also set the variable FAI_DISABLE_PACKAGE_NAME_CHECK to 1.
Read the configuration files from DIRECTORY instead of $FAI/packages_config.
Download source of binary packages that are installed. Currently supported only for apt-get/aptitude based installations.
Be verbose.


install_packages expects to find the FAI_ROOT directory, the location of class definitions, package configurations, and custom install scripts, somewhere in the filesystem.


apt(1), aptitude(8), apt-get(8), dpkg(8), tasksel(1)

This program is part of FAI (Fully Automatic Installation). See the FAI manual for more information on how to use install_packages. The FAI homepage is


The FAI package configuration directory.


Thomas Lange <>

April 2018 FAI 5.6