In one of my previous articles, I have explained how packages are installed, removed, updated and upgraded using apt-get and apt-cache command. The apt-get command is a powerful package management tool which works with Ubuntu’s APT (Advanced Packaging Tool) library in order to perform installation of new software packages, removal of already existing software packages, to upgrade pre-existing software packages and even used to upgrade the whole operating system. To know more about apt-get and apt-cache commands, please read my article- Packages Management in Debian Based Operating Systems Using APT-GET & APT-CACHE.
In this article, we will learn about an utility that improves the speed of apt-get downloads drastically and it is 'apt-fast'. apt-fast is a shell script wrapper for apt-get and aptitude that can drastically improve apt download times by downloading packages in parallel. apt-fast makes use of aria2c and axel download managers to accelerate the APT downloading processes. It does not only support multiple connections per package to improve the download rate, but also supports proxy. If you are familiar with apt-get use, you will find that apt-fast is used in the similar way as that of apt-get when it comes to installing, removing, updating and upgrading the packages but with a superior speed.
apt-fast comes as a pre-installed package in some of the Linux distributions such as PCLinuxOS, but in Ubuntu, you need to install it from its official PPA as follows:
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:apt-fast/stable sudo apt-get update sudo apt-get install apt-fast
During the installation process, you will be asked to enter the maximum number of connections per package download.
|Maximum No. of Connections|
Then select 'No' if you want to be asked for confirmation during the installation or download of any package.
|Enable/Disable Confirmation Dialogs|
Whenever you want to change the apt-fast options, you can do it so using following command:
sudo dpkg-reconfigure apt-fast
From here you can change the download manager (axel or aria2c) and select between apt-get and aptitude as per your needs.
|Select: apt-get or aptitude|
|Select the Download Manager|
Users of other Linux distributions can get apt-fast from GitHub.
How to Use apt-fast..?As mentioned earlier, apt-fast works in the similar way as that of apt-get, just replace 'apt-get' with 'apt-fast' and you're done.
Installing a Package
sudo apt-fast install [PackageName]
Removing a Package
sudo apt-fast remove [PackageName]
Updating the Packages
sudo apt-fast update
Upgrading the Packages
sudo apt-fast upgrade