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       apt-cross - apt support for cross compiling libraries


       apt-cross [[-a] | [--arch] ARCH] [[-S] | [--suite] SUITE] [[-m] |
                 [--mirror] MIRROR] [[-f] | [--force]] [{-g|--get} PACKAGE

       apt-cross [[-a] | [--arch] ARCH] [[-S] | [--suite] SUITE] [[-m] |
                 [--mirror] MIRROR] [[-f] | [--force]] [[-x] | [--exclude]
                 PACKAGE] {-b|--build} PACKAGE ...

       apt-cross [[-a] | [--arch] ARCH] [[-S] | [--suite] SUITE] [[-m] |
                 [--mirror] MIRROR] [[-x] | [--exclude] PACKAGE] [[-k] |
                 [--keep-temp]] [[-n] | [--simulate]] {-i|--install} PACKAGE

       apt-cross [[-a] | [--arch] ARCH] {--remove|--purge|-r} PACKAGE ...

       apt-cross [[-a] | [--arch] ARCH] [[-S] | [--suite] SUITE] [[-m] |
                 [--mirror] MIRROR] {-s|--show} PACKAGE ...

       apt-cross [[-a] | [--arch] ARCH] [[-S] | [--suite] SUITE] [[-m] |
                 [--mirror] MIRROR] {-l|--list}

       apt-cross [[-a] | [--arch] ARCH] [[-S] | [--suite] SUITE] [[-m] |
                 [--mirror] MIRROR] {-u|--update}

       apt-cross [[-a] | [--arch] ARCH] [[-S] | [--suite] SUITE] [[-m] |
                 [--mirror] MIRROR] {--clean-lists}

       apt-cross [[-a] | [--arch] ARCH] [[-S] | [--suite] SUITE] [[-m] |
                 [--mirror] MIRROR] {-c|--check}

       apt-cross [[-?] | [-h] | [--help] | [--version]]


       apt-cross provides apt functionality for getting, building and
       installing libraries and header files for cross-compiling using
       dpkg-cross.  apt-cross -i will search for and download missing
       dependencies of the requested package before building and installing
       the requested package and dependencies using dpkg-cross and dpkg -i
       (sudo required).

       apt-cross is intended to make it easier to locate, download, install
       and update cross-built libraries, directly from the Debian archives.

       apt-cross is not intended to handle applications or Architecture: all
       packages like foo-common or libfoo-common.  apt-cross can download the
       cross-compiling version of those packages but does not build or install
       them - this can be done with dpkg-cross -A and dpkg -i if necessary.
       Note that not all such packages can be installed in that way.

       Architecture-independent packages do not need to be converted, so
       apt-cross omits all such packages from the dependency calculations and
       ensures that dpkg-cross also drops these packages from the dependencies
       of the generated package. One exception is that apt-cross will process
       development packages (-dev) that are Architecture: all.

       By default, apt-cross uses /etc/apt/sources.list and
       /etc/apt/sources.list.d/* to find the latest debian package file for
       the architecture specified (default is the dpkg-cross default) and in
       the suite specified (default is unstable). Alternatively, specify a
       different mirror. Downloaded files can be passed directly to dpkg-cross
       using the -b or -i commands to apt-cross. If the local file is missing
       or out of date, a new one will be downloaded automatically.

       If the apt-cross cache for the specified suite and architecture is
       older than 24hours, it will be updated automatically. If the cache
       needs to be updated more frequently or if the cache becomes corrupted,
       use -u|--update.

       apt-cross does have limitations and cannot replicate all behaviour
       associated with apt itself. In particular, apt-cross cannot provide,
       build, install or download a cross-compiler. Certain parts of the
       process to build a cross-compiling toolchain do require apt-cross but
       you must obtain a suitable set of packages from somewhere else or build
       the toolchain yourself. See the emdebian-tools package for assistance
       with cross-compilers and cross-building toolchains.


       --g|--get <packages...>
           Retrieve the architecture-specific package(s) from the Debian
           mirrors into the current directory. If the package has already been
           downloaded, apt-cross will skip the download unless --force is

       --b|--build <packages...>
           Retrieve the architecture-specific package(s) from the Debian
           mirrors into the current directory and pass to dpkg-cross to build
           a cross-built version.

           'Architecture: all' dependencies of the requested package are added
           to the list of dependencies to be excluded from the cross package
           using dpkg-cross -X.

           --build will always replace any existing cross package file in the
           same directory. Use --force only to ensure that apt-cross gets a
           fresh package prior to conversion.

           Dependencies of the requested package are not processed recursively
           so the cross package may be uninstallable without other cross
           packages, see --install for that functionality.

       --i|--install <packages...>
           Retrieve the architecture-specific package(s) from the Debian
           mirrors into the current directory. Check for dependencies that are
           suitable for dpkg-cross, download each dependency and build, then
           install the package and dependencies using dpkg-cross and dpkg -i.
           If successfully installed, the temporary downloaded archives are
           removed. Requires working sudo setup and will prompt for the sudo
           password if necessary (if sudo is not already cached).

       -r|--remove|--purge <packages...>
           Remove the cross-built package by calling dpkg. Requires working
           sudo setup and will prompt for the sudo password if necessary (if
           sudo is not already cached).

       -s|--show <packages...>
           Show the package information for the cross-built packages
           specified. If the package name does not end in -$arch-cross, the
           correct suffix will be added. The output format is the same as the
           equivalent apt-cache show output and includes the dependencies of
           the cross-built package. Note that only the details of cross-built
           packages (in the repository or installed) are displayed.

           List all cross-built package names. (Similar to apt-cache

           Force the user-specific apt-cross cache to be updated. Note that
           all sources for this suite on the specified architecture will be
           erased before the package cache is updated. If
           /etc/apt/sources.list or /etc/apt/sources.list.d/* does not contain
           a source for this suite, the updated cache for this suite will be
           empty. Use -m|--mirror to specify a source to be added to whatever
           sources are available for this suite in /etc/apt/sources.list and

           Force the user-specific apt-cross package list files to be updated.
           apt-cross turns off the normal apt default of cleaning up the
           package lists automatically because apt has a habit of removing the
           package lists for non-native architectures during the automated

           This makes it impossible to maintain two sets of package lists from
           different architectures, requiring a complete update every time the
           cache switches architecture.

           Turning the option off, however, can lead to clutter and confusing
           errors from libcache-apt-perl so this command removes all package
           list files from the apt-cross directory for the specified or
           default suite, then runs force_update.

           Check if the user-specific apt-cross cache needs to be updated and
           update if necessary.


       -a|--arch ARCH
           set architecture (default: defined in the
           ~/.dpkg-cross/cross-compile configuration file or by the dpkg-cross
           debconf configuration.)

       -S|--suite SUITE
           Set the Debian suite (stable, testing, unstable [default]). Only
           apt sources that already list this suite name in your apt sources
           lists will be updated. The suite specified must already be in your
           existing apt sources unless --mirror is also used (in which case
           the specified mirror must support the requested suite or apt will
           return errors).

       -m|--mirror MIRROR
           set the Debian mirror to use to retrieve packages instead of the
           default of using your existing apt sources.

           As from apt-cross v0.1.2, architecture-independent dependencies are
           NOT processed.  apt-cross also passes options to dpkg-cross to
           ensure that the cross package omits the same dependencies. If there
           are additional packages that need to be omitted, this option allows
           individual packages (e.g. perl-base) to be added to the list.

           The option is typically used to drop dependencies on packages that
           are not required within a cross-build environment, e.g. packages
           containing only executables or architecture independent files.

           Requires -i. Halts the install operation at the point where the
           dependencies have been calculated and apt-cross prints a summary
           message indicating how many packages need to be installed as new
           and how many as upgrades.

           Requires -i. Retains the .deb archives downloaded for conversion by
           dpkg-cross for use in later builds. Normally, these foreign
           architecture .deb archives are removed after a successful
           installation. This option is provided mainly for use in a chroot or
           other situation where the archives need to be copied into the local
           cache.  apt-cross will check /var/cache/apt/archives/ before trying
           to download another copy so a chroot process can copy the archives
           into the chroot apt cache to prevent repeat downloads. Note that
           apt-cross downloads the archives into the current working
           directory; if this is a package source directory, consider changing
           to a temporary directory before starting apt-cross --keep-temp
           --install foo or arrange for the chroot process to move the files
           into the local apt cache before starting the build. (empdebuild
           from emdebian-tools does this for you.)

           apt-cross will normally skip downloads and rebuilds of cross
           packages already installed at the latest available version. Use
           --force to override this behaviour. In --get mode, --force simply
           downloads another version of the ARCH package. In --build mode,
           --force downloads a fresh ARCH package and rebuilds the cross
           version, overwriting a cross package in the same directory.

           be verbose - repeat once for extra verbosity. Repeat twice to see
           comprehensive debug information.

           be quiet. (default)

           Print usage and version information and exit.


       It is common for a chroot to not provide a Sources URL for apt. This
       causes problems for apt-cross and when preparing a chroot to use
       apt-cross a deb-src line will need to be added to whichever
       sources.list the chroot can use.


       apt-cross supports various levels of verbose output and -v can be
       useful in identifying problems. When preparing bug reports, it is often
       useful to use the debug level of verbose output using -v -v -v and
       redirecting the output to a file.


       apt-cross uses apt for the majority of the downloads, then uses the LWP
       perl module for the file download. Therefore, all proxy support needs
       to be configured to support these tools - apt-cross does not interact
       with any proxy (or any other network service) directly.

       The precise configuration of any specific proxy is beyond the scope of
       this manpage but it is important that the correct environment variable
       is used for the type of apt source being used. If the apt source uses
       the http:// prefix, the http_proxy variable must be set. (This is
       case-sensitive.) If the apt source uses the ftp:// prefix, the
       ftp_proxy environment variable must be set. (This is also
       case-sensitive). It does not appear to matter which prefix is used for
       the proxy itself.


       apt-cross has a very limited future. It is a tool for a particular
       stage in the process of making Debian cross-building friendly and as
       such it serves as a means to an end.

       As more dpkg-cross code migrates into dpkg-dev, apt-cross will become
       less important. Simultaneously, making apt cross-build friendly will
       become easier. The ultimate aim is therefore to aim for apt to replace
       apt-cross in a coordinated migration with dpkg-cross and dpkg.

       Eventually, when the core dpkg-cross functionality is merged into dpkg,
       apt-cross will be removed from Debian and the relevant versions of dpkg
       and apt will Replace: and Conflict: with dpkg-cross and apt-cross

       Anyone looking at the apt-cross source code needs to be aware that any
       improvements will only have a limited lifespan.


           Collection of directories and cache files for each suite (unstable,
           testing, stable etc.).

           Sources list for each suite.


       dpkg-cross (1), emdebian-tools (1) and


       apt-cross was written by Neil Williams <>.

       This manual page was written by Neil Williams <>


       This program is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify it
       under the terms of the GNU General Public License as published by the
       Free Software Foundation; either version 2 of the License, or (at your
       option) any later version.

       This program is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but
       WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of
       General Public License for more details.

       You should have received a copy of the GNU General Public License along
       with this program; if not, write to the Free Software Foundation, Inc.,
       51 Franklin Street, Fifth Floor, Boston, MA 02110-1301, USA.