Quickly Check Which Services And Packages In Debian Aren’t Yet Updated After Applying Updates


After updating/upgrading packages when using Debian or any Debian based distro, it can be useful to know which all software packages and services in use are still not updated.

There is a simple command-line tool in Debian to know this , it’s the checkrestart tool. This example uses Debian 10.

It comes with the Debian goodies package and if not installed, install it from the Terminal with the following command:

sudo apt install debian-goodies

installing Debian goodies package in Debian

During the installation, you can opt-out of sending anonymous statistics about various installed packages (which is the default choice).

opt-in or out of the popularity contest to send anonymous statistics in Debian

Choose Yes or No to finish the installation.

Once installed, checkrestart needs to be run with root access:

sudo checkrestart

In this example, there were a lot of updates applied. So the checkrestart tool shows that there are still many processes and packages which aren’t updated yet as they are currently in use.

checkrestart tool showing number of packages and processes that aren't updated in Debian

If there are only a few services that are still of the older version, simply restart them from the command-line. The simplest option though when there are many updates applied is to reboot the system.

various services that can be manually restarted to update them in Debian listed using the checkrestart tool

After rebooting, all the packages and services are updated as displayed by the checkrestart tool.

all packages and processes upated to the latest version after a reboot in Debian

Happy updating.


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