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I'm looking at the debian package here:

Before installing it, I'm curious how much information I can get just by analyzing the debian package.

I would love to know exactly what is going to be installed and where.

is this possible?

share|improve this question… -- or search the site for deb security – user8290 Feb 2 '12 at 3:07
up vote 3 down vote accepted

If you want this from the commandline, use dpkg-deb:

dpkg-deb --extract some-package.deb /directory/to/unpack

dpkg-deb --control some-package.deb /directory/to/unpack/DEBIAN

This should leave a directory structure similar to what you'd be able to see in gdebi.

share|improve this answer
but what if it installs to /etc/default? will it be forced to create that in /directory/to/unpack? – Blankman Feb 3 '12 at 1:40
No, it creates the directories it needs, so in this case /directory/to/unpack/etc will be created. Try it, it's harmless! Just don't point it at your root, i.e. don't dpkg-deb --extract pack.deb / – roadmr Feb 3 '12 at 2:10

Yes this is very possible.

Install gdebi Install gdebi, which allows you to see the contents of the Debian package as if you had installed it.

gdebi screenshot

To do this, install gdebi, then open it, and open the Debian package from file>open.

share|improve this answer
would this work from the command line? – Blankman Feb 2 '12 at 2:35
@Blankman: no, sorry. – RolandiXor Feb 2 '12 at 3:48

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