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How to find out when Debian or Ubuntu package installed or updated

How do I find and list installed Debian or Ubuntu Linux packages date? How can I see when packages got updated on my systems?

Debian or Ubuntu Linux log package status changes and actions to a file. The default is /var/log/dpkg.log file. This file has log message in the following format:

Log messages are of the form `YYYY-MM-DD HH:MM:SS status state pkg installed-version’ for status change updates; `YYYY-MM-DD HH:MM:SS action pkg installed-version available-version’ for actions where action is one of install, upgrade, remove, purge; and `YYYY-MM-DD HH:MM:SS conffile filename decision’ for conffile changes where decision is either install or keep.

List packages by installation date

Simply type the following command to see the last packages info:
# tail -f /var/log/dpkg.log
Sample outputs:

2016-01-14 13:20:50 status installed man-db:amd64 2.6.7.1-1ubuntu1
2016-01-14 13:20:50 trigproc libc-bin:amd64 2.19-0ubuntu6.6 
2016-01-14 13:20:50 status half-configured libc-bin:amd64 2.19-0ubuntu6.6
2016-01-14 13:20:50 status installed libc-bin:amd64 2.19-0ubuntu6.6
2016-01-14 13:20:50 trigproc libglib2.0-0:amd64 2.40.2-0ubuntu1 
2016-01-14 13:20:50 status half-configured libglib2.0-0:amd64 2.40.2-0ubuntu1
2016-01-14 13:20:51 status installed libglib2.0-0:amd64 2.40.2-0ubuntu1
2016-01-14 13:20:51 trigproc gconf2:amd64 3.2.6-0ubuntu2 
2016-01-14 13:20:51 status half-configured gconf2:amd64 3.2.6-0ubuntu2
2016-01-14 13:20:51 status installed gconf2:amd64 3.2.6-0ubuntu2

To view all info, enter:
# less /var/log/dpkg.log
# more /var/log/dpkg.log

Fig.01: Ubuntu Linux List Package Install Upgrade Date and Time

Fig.01: Ubuntu Linux List Package Install Upgrade Date and Time


/var/log/dpkg.log may be rotated or compressed using logrotate tool. To view list of all files, enter:
# ls -l /var/log/dpkg.log*
Sample outputs:

-rw-r--r-- 1 root root  9252 Jan 14 13:27 /var/log/dpkg.log
-rw-r--r-- 1 root root 11658 Dec 16 03:53 /var/log/dpkg.log.1
-rw-r--r-- 1 root root  1563 Mar 22  2015 /var/log/dpkg.log.10.gz
-rw-r--r-- 1 root root 14218 Feb 17  2015 /var/log/dpkg.log.11.gz
-rw-r--r-- 1 root root   962 Nov 27 18:14 /var/log/dpkg.log.2.gz
-rw-r--r-- 1 root root  2008 Oct 30 14:09 /var/log/dpkg.log.3.gz
-rw-r--r-- 1 root root  2490 Sep 30 14:01 /var/log/dpkg.log.4.gz
-rw-r--r-- 1 root root  1875 Aug 17 05:09 /var/log/dpkg.log.5.gz
-rw-r--r-- 1 root root   847 Jul 22 12:31 /var/log/dpkg.log.6.gz
-rw-r--r-- 1 root root  1367 Jun 25  2015 /var/log/dpkg.log.7.gz
-rw-r--r-- 1 root root  1460 May 31  2015 /var/log/dpkg.log.8.gz
-rw-r--r-- 1 root root  5504 Apr 29  2015 /var/log/dpkg.log.9.gz

Use the zgrep or zmore command to search or view gzipd log files:
# zmore /var/log/dpkg.log.5.gz
# zless /var/log/dpkg.log.5.gz
# zgrep 'remove' /var/log/dpkg.log.5.gz

See package installation date and time

# grep installed /var/log/dpkg.log
Sample outputs:

2016-01-05 14:32:53 status half-installed libidn11:amd64 1.28-1ubuntu2
2016-01-05 14:32:53 status half-installed wget:amd64 1.15-1ubuntu1.14.04.1
2016-01-05 14:32:53 status installed libidn11:amd64 1.28-1ubuntu2
2016-01-05 14:32:53 status installed wget:amd64 1.15-1ubuntu1.14.04.1
2016-01-05 14:32:53 status installed libc-bin:amd64 2.19-0ubuntu6.6
2016-01-06 14:03:27 status half-installed libpng12-0:amd64 1.2.50-1ubuntu2.14.04.1
2016-01-06 14:03:27 status half-installed libpng12-0:amd64 1.2.50-1ubuntu2.14.04.1
2016-01-06 14:03:28 status installed libpng12-0:amd64 1.2.50-1ubuntu2.14.04.2
2016-01-06 14:03:28 status installed libc-bin:amd64 2.19-0ubuntu6.6
2016-01-10 13:41:54 status half-installed libgnutls-openssl27:amd64 2.12.23-12ubuntu2.3
2016-01-10 13:41:54 status half-installed libgnutls-openssl27:amd64 2.12.23-12ubuntu2.3
2016-01-10 13:41:54 status half-installed libgnutls26:amd64 2.12.23-12ubuntu2.3
2016-01-10 13:41:54 status half-installed libgnutls26:amd64 2.12.23-12ubuntu2.3
2016-01-10 13:41:54 status installed libgnutls26:amd64 2.12.23-12ubuntu2.4
2016-01-10 13:41:54 status installed libgnutls-openssl27:amd64 2.12.23-12ubuntu2.4
2016-01-10 13:41:54 status installed libc-bin:amd64 2.19-0ubuntu6.6
2016-01-14 13:27:15 status half-installed gcc-4.9-base:amd64 4.9.1-0ubuntu1
2016-01-14 13:27:15 status half-installed gcc-4.9-base:amd64 4.9.1-0ubuntu1
2016-01-14 13:27:15 status installed gcc-4.9-base:amd64 4.9.3-0ubuntu4
2016-01-14 13:27:15 status half-installed libgcc1:amd64 1:4.9.1-0ubuntu1
2016-01-14 13:27:15 status half-installed libgcc1:amd64 1:4.9.1-0ubuntu1
2016-01-14 13:27:15 status installed libgcc1:amd64 1:4.9.3-0ubuntu4
2016-01-14 13:27:15 status installed libc-bin:amd64 2.19-0ubuntu6.6
2016-01-14 13:27:15 status half-installed isc-dhcp-client:amd64 4.2.4-7ubuntu12.3
2016-01-14 13:27:15 status half-installed isc-dhcp-client:amd64 4.2.4-7ubuntu12.3
2016-01-14 13:27:15 status half-installed isc-dhcp-common:amd64 4.2.4-7ubuntu12.3
2016-01-14 13:27:15 status half-installed isc-dhcp-common:amd64 4.2.4-7ubuntu12.3
2016-01-14 13:27:15 status installed isc-dhcp-common:amd64 4.2.4-7ubuntu12.4
2016-01-14 13:27:16 status installed isc-dhcp-client:amd64 4.2.4-7ubuntu12.4

To look into gzipd log file, enter:
# zgrep installed /var/log/dpkg.log.3.gz

List package upgrade date and time

# grep upgrade /var/log/dpkg.log
# grep upgrade /var/log/dpkg.log.1
#***[ Look into gzipd dpkg.log.2.gz file using zgrep ]***#
# zgrep upgrade /var/log/dpkg.log.2.gz

Show package removal (deleted) date and time

# grep remove /var/log/dpkg.log
# grep remove /var/log/dpkg.log.1
#***[ Look into gzipd dpkg.log.2.gz file using zgrep ]***#
# zgrep remove /var/log/dpkg.log.2.gz

Say hello to /var/log/apt/history.log file

The /var/log/apt/history.log file has same info too. To view, enter:
# tail -f /var/log/apt/history.log
# more /var/log/apt/history.log
# less /var/log/apt/history.log
# grep -A4 -B4 'yyyy-mm-dd' /var/log/apt/history.log
# grep -A4 '2016-01-14' /var/log/apt/history.log

Start-Date: 2016-01-14  13:18:16
Commandline: apt-get upgrade
Upgrade: isc-dhcp-common:amd64 (4.2.4-7ubuntu12.3, 4.2.4-7ubuntu12.4), isc-dhcp-client:amd64 (4.2.4-7ubuntu12.3, 4.2.4-7ubuntu12.4)
End-Date: 2016-01-14  13:18:24
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