Revision 17 as of 2006-01-14 12:12:13

Clear message

This page will describe how to make a cd which contains packages you have downloaded on one machine using apt or synaptic. The cd will be a repository that you can easily use on another machine using synaptic or apt-cdrom.

For example, I will show how to make a cd which contains all the security updates that has been downloaded.

Except for adding new apt PGP keys, the user of the cd will not need to use the command-line to use it.

Step one Install the apt-move package

Apt-move is a tool for creating a debian package repository file structure out of packages that have been downloaded to /var/cache/apt/archives. Installed packages are downloded there by apt for installation. Apt-move will create this local repository in /mirrors/debian, by default.

sudo apt-get install apt-move

(Or just use synaptic) You need to enable the universe repository. See AddingRepositoriesHowto

I change the setting in /etc/apt-move.conf from




So that apt-move doesn't delete file from your /var/cache/apt/archives/.

Step two Select the packages you want to put on the cd

In this example, we only want to put freshly downloaded packages. We don't want to put old packages or packages that exist in Ubuntu CD.

First, we clean up the /var/cache/apt/archives from old packages.

sudo apt-get autoclean

Next, we delete packages that exists in the Ubuntu CD. Put your Ubuntu CD on CD-ROM Drive then run the following:

for f in `find /media/cdrom/pool/ -name '*.deb' -printf %f\\n`
  if [ -f /var/cache/apt/archives/$f ]; then
    sudo rm -v /var/cache/apt/archives/$f

Step three Run apt move to create the archive structure

Make sure you have enough disk space first.

Because /mirrors/debian is root owned we must become root to make the steps easier.

sudo -s

All the following command run as root:

rm -rf /mirrors/debian
apt-move -d breezy update

Because ubuntu repository structure, not all packages are inserted into the Packages.gz file by apt-move. We must remake Packages.gz with the help of apt-ftparchive.

cd /mirrors/debian
apt-ftparchive packages pool/main/ \
  | gzip -9c > dists/breezy/main/binary-i386/Packages.gz
apt-ftparchive packages pool/restricted/ \
  | gzip -9c > dists/breezy/restricted/binary-i386/Packages.gz

We must also remake Release file:

apt-ftparchive release dists/breezy/ >> dists/breezy/Release

Next, edit the Release file so it looks like this:

Origin: APT-Move
Label: APT-Move
Suite: breezy
Codename: breezy
Date: Sat, 14 Jan 2006 08:49:42 UTC
Architectures: i386
Components: main
Description: Ubuntu-Updates
 cf3c2af8788837055411304a1a67bc33            32703 main/binary-i386/Packages.gz
 8441b8013080986d418764ff332ed520               84 main/binary-i386/Release
 b6aa558537081fab561ecf8394ef222d             2006 restricted/binary-i386/Packages.gz
 e592633392ed258f5a2612567f0a2373               90 restricted/binary-i386/Release
 ba71033fe43887d53133105a7ebd4ccfcc46d099            32703 main/binary-i386/Packages.gz
 8c3ffb334d44d4189b42fa11277fcf8630a1c988               84 main/binary-i386/Release
 2d0dc5e049a785d09fdd211b13ed9a90451ecea2             2006 restricted/binary-i386/Packages.gz
 7b96af30236517786c4b17b2292c893250d40ac2               90 restricted/binary-i386/Release

Then we need to make Release.gpg, to make it you must already have GPG set and ready to sign.

gpg -bao dists/breezy/Release.gpg dists/breezy/Release

Next, we delete unwanted .apt-move directory

rm -rf .apt-move

You can identify the cd by making a .disk directory and making an info file in it.

mkdir .disk
echo Ubuntu-Updates `date +%Y-%m-%d` > .disk/info

Then we need to put our public keys in it.

gpg --export -a "Zakaria" > public.key

Thats' all


Step four Burn the cd

Copy the contents of what is contained in /mirrors/debian to a cd.

For example you could make an iso by following command:

mkisofs -r -A "Ubuntu Updates `date +%Y%m%d`" -o ubuntu-updates.iso \

Before you could use the CD, you need to add our GPG key to apt GPG keys.

mount /cdrom
apt-key add /cdrom/public.key
umount /cdrom

On a non-networked ubuntu machine, you can run synaptic, insert the cd and go into Synaptic -> Edit -> Add Cdrom and it will add the contents of the cd to your repositories.

You can also do it from the command-line with

sudo apt-cdrom add