How to remove programs in Debian

Unused and unwanted programs must be removed from the system, as they take up a lot of disk space. This article is about uninstalling programs that are no longer required on a Debian system. We will explain the removal of the program through the graphical user interface and the terminal method on the command line.

Remember that to install / uninstall any application on your Debian OS, you will need administrator rights.

We used Debian 10 to run the commands and procedures mentioned in this article.

Removing Debian Applications through the Debian Software Center

In the following method, we will learn how to remove applications through the Debian Software Center. To open the Software Center, click the Actions tab in the upper left corner of the Debian desktop. Then find the Software Center by keyword. When the result appears, click on its icon to open.

When the software center opens, you will see the following view. Go to Installed Tab. It will list all installed applications on your system. In the list, find the application you want to remove, and click delete Button in front of it.

When you click the Delete button, the following message appears confirming the decision. If you are sure you want to delete the selected application, click Delete.

Delete application

You will then be asked to enter a password for authentication. Enter your password and click Authenticate,

Authenticate as administrator

Now the selected software will be removed from your system.

Uninstall Debian Applications Using the Command Line

In the next method, we will see how to remove any application through the command line. To open a command line terminal on a Debian system, click the Actions tab in the upper left corner of the desktop. Then find the Terminal app using the search bar. When the terminal icon appears, click on it to open.

To remove applications through the command line, we will use the apt-get remove and apt-get purge commands. To view the list of packages installed on your system, you can use the following command in the Terminal:

$ dpkg --list

From the output list, you can copy the exact name of the package that you want to remove.

Use the apt-get remove command

The Apt-get remove command will remove the package, but save the data and configuration files along with the dependencies that were added during installation.

To uninstall the application, run the following command as sudo in Terminal:

$ sudo apt-get remove “package-name”

When prompted for a password, enter sudo password.

In the following example, we remove the Dconf editor from our system using the apt-get remove command:

$ sudo apt-get remove dconf-editor

Uninstall application using apt

The system can provide you with the Y / n option to confirm the removal process. Press y to confirm and the software will be removed from your system.

Use apt-get purge command in Debian

Unlike the apt-get remove command, which simply removes software from the system, the apt-get purge command also removes the data and configuration files associated with this software.

To uninstall the software and its configuration file, use the following command syntax in Terminal:

$ sudo apt-get purge “package-name”

In the following example, we remove the Playonlinux application from our system. To do this, we used the following command in the terminal:

$ sudo apt-get purge playonlinux

Clean up Debian application

The system can provide you with the Y / n option to confirm the removal process. Press y to continue and the software will be removed from your system.

Application successfully uninstalled

Bonus: cleaning with automatic removal

Whenever we install an application, the system also installs some other packages and libraries on which this application depends. When we delete a package, these dependencies are not removed and remain in the system. To also remove these dependencies, run the following command in Terminal:

$ sudo apt-get autoremove

It will list all unused dependencies that take up a lot of space on your system and give you Y / n capability to confirm the removal process. Press y on your keyboard to remove all unused dependencies on your system.

Using apt autoremove

It is important to remove unused packages and their dependencies from the system in order to free up and clean up disk space. From the methods described above, you can use apt-get remove to remove only packages, or apt-get purge to remove packages along with their configuration files. In the end, you can use apt-get autoremove to make sure there are no unused dependencies left.

How to remove programs in Debian

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