Synaptic Package Manager

Synaptic Package Manager

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Synaptic Package Manager

Synaptic Package Manager is a graphical front-end to apt (Advanced Package Tool), the package management system in Bodhi Linux. It combines the point-and-click simplicity with the power of the apt or apt-get command-line tools.

You will see Synaptic Package Manager interchanged with simply “Synaptic”


  • Install, remove, upgrade and downgrade single and multiple packages
  • Upgrade your whole system
  • Manage package repositories (sources.list)
  • Find packages by name, description and several other attributes
  • Select packages by status, section, name or a custom filter
  • Sort packages by name, status, size or version
  • Browse all available online documentation related to a package
  • Download the latest changelog of a package
  • Lock packages to the current version
  • Force the installation of a specific package version
  • Undo/Redo of selections

Getting Started

To open Synaptic Package Manager:

Main Menu > Applications > System Tools > Synaptic Package Manager

Note: Synaptic requires elevated permissions to run; you will be prompted to enter your sudo password – by default, this is your login password

Application Overview

The Main Window

This is divided into three sections:

  • 1. Package browser – left panel
  • 2. Package list – upper right panel
  • 3. Package details – lower right panel

Synaptics Package Manager

The Toolbar

The toolbar contains the following items:
Synaptic Toolbar

  • Reload: reloads the list of applications from each of the repositories held on your system
  • Mark All Upgrades: marks all the applications that have available upgrades
  • Apply: applies changes to marked applications
  • Properties: provides information about selected applications
  • Search: opens a search box where you can search the repositories for an application

Package Browser – Left Panel

There are a series of buttons at the bottom of the left panel, they change the view of the list at the top of the left panel. The buttons being:

  • Sections: shows a list of categories in the left panel
  • Status: show applications by status. The statuses are: Installed, Installed (auto removable), Installed (local or obsolete), Installed (manually), Installed (upgradeable), Not Installed, Not Installed (residual config)
  • Origin: displays a list of repositories
  • Custom Filters: filter by categories: All, Broken, Community Maintained, Marked Changes, Missing Recommended Packages, Packages with Debconf, Search Filter, Upgradeable (upstream)
  • Search Results: shows a list of search results in the right panel
  • Architecture: lists categories by architecture: All, Arch: all, Arch: amd64, Arch: i386

Package List – Upper Right Panel

Clicking a category in the left panel or searching for an application brings up a list of applications in the upper right panel. The applications panel contains the following headings:

  • Check Mark (for selected)
  • Package (name)
  • Installed Version
  • Latest Version
  • Description

Package Description – Lower Right Panel

The lower left panel displays a more detailed description of the selected application from the upper right panel package list

Tip: to install or upgrade an application, see the section Install Software Packages (below)


Repositories represent collections of nearly all the software, drivers, codecs, libraries and other packages that are available for Bodhi Linux. These are curated by the Bodhi Linux Development Team (Moksha Desktop, Bodhi Linux Apps and similar) or, for more generic/general Ubuntu based packages, the wider Ubuntu development community.

To manage software package repositories from the Synaptic Menu, click Settings > Repositories

Synaptic Repositories From there you can enable/disable installed repositories, or add new.

Using Synaptic To:

Install Software Package(s)

  1. Find a package you want to install (by searching or using filtered categories). In the package list on the right, click your package and select Mark for Installation. A confirmation will be displayed; review and when happy click Mark.
    Synaptic Mark for Installation
  2. If you have more software packages to install, repeat step #1. Once you’re satisfied you have all your software Marked for Installation, click Apply from the toolbar.
  3. A final confirmation window will open. Review the packages to be installed by expanding the To be Installed list. When you’re happy to proceed, click Apply to install the package. The installation progress will be shown, followed by a confirmation when complete.

Synaptic Apply

Upgrade a Package

Click Reload from the toolbar (or press <Ctrl>+< R>) to refresh the Synaptic Repository Cache. Right-click on the package, selecting Mark for Upgrade from the context menu (or press <Ctrl>+<U>). Once you are satisfied with your choices, click Apply in the toolbar (or press <Ctrl>+<P>).

A summary of changes will be shown, confirm the changes by clicking on Apply.

Note: if your system does not have Internet access, generate a download script instead of using Apply

Update all Package(s)

Just like when upgrading a package, click Reload (or press <Ctrl>+<R>) to refresh the Synaptic Repository Cache. From the toolbar, click Mark all Upgrades (or press <Ctrl>+<G>). Click Apply on the toolbar (or press <Ctrl>+<P>). A  summary of the changes will be shown. Click Apply to confirm the changes and proceed with updates.

Synaptic Mark All For Upgrade

Remove or Uninstall Packages

To remove a package, right-click on the package and select Mark for Removal. Once you’re satisfied with your selection(s), click on Apply from the toolbar (or press <Ctrl>+< P>). A summary of changes will be shown; confirm the changes by clicking Apply.

Note: the Mark for Complete Removal option will remove any configuration files associated with the package as well, similar to purge

Fix broken package(s)

A broken package is one which has dependencies that cannot be satisfied during installation. If one or more broken packages are detected, Synaptic will prevent any further package changes until the broken package(s) have been addressed.

To fix broken package(s), from the Synaptic Menu select Edit > Fix Broken Packages. Select Apply Marked Changes (or press <Ctrl>+< P>). Confirm the summary of changes and click Apply.

Additional Resources

Bodhi Linux Home
Bodhi Linux – Wiki Home Page
Bodhi Linux – Wiki Table of Contents