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deb(5)				    Debian				deb(5)

       deb - Debian binary package format


       The  .deb format is the Debian binary package file format. It is under
       stood by dpkg 0.93.76 and later, and is generated  by  default  by  all
       versions  of dpkg since 1.2.0 and all i386/ELF versions since 1.1.1elf.

       The format described here is used since Debian 0.93; details of the old
       format are described in deb-old(5).

       The file is an ar archive with a magic number of !.

       The first member is named debian-binary and contains a series of lines,
       separated by newlines. Currently only one line is present,  the	format
       version number, 2.0 at the time this manual page was written.  Programs
       which read new-format archives should be prepared for the minor	number
       to be increased and new lines to be present, and should ignore these if
       this is the case.

       If the major number has changed, an incompatible change has  been  made
       and  the program should stop. If it has not, then the program should be
       able to safely continue, unless it encounters an unexpected  member  in
       the archive (except at the end), as described below.

       The  second  required  member is named control.tar.gz.  It is a gzipped
       tar archive containing the package control information, as a series  of
       plain  files,  of  which the file control is mandatory and contains the
       core control information. The control tarball may optionally contain an
       entry for ., the current directory.

       The  third, last required member is named data.tar.gz.  It contains the
       filesystem archive as a gzipped tar archive.

       These members must occur in this exact order.  Current  implementations
       should  ignore  any additional members after data.tar.gz.  Further mem
       bers may be defined in the future, and (if  possible)  will  be	placed
       after  these three. Any additional members that may need to be inserted
       before data.tar.gz and which should be safely  ignored  by  older  pro
       grams, will have names starting with an underscore, _.

       Those  new  members  which  wont  be able to be safely ignored will be
       inserted before data.tar.gz with names starting	with  something  other
       than  underscores, or will (more likely) cause the major version number
       to be increased.

       deb-old(5), dpkg-deb(1), deb-control(5).

Debian Project			  2006-02-28				deb(5)

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