deb is the extension of the Debian software package format and the most often used name for such binary packages. Like the "Deb" part of the term Debian, it originates from the name of Debra, erstwhile girlfriend and now ex-wife of Debian's founder Ian Murdock.

Debian packages are also used in distributions based on Debian, such as Ubuntu and others.

Technically, such a package is a .ar archive with a different file extension, possibly compressed, and containing a file called CONTROL. This file includes important information, such as dependencies, recommendations, and conflicting packages. It will also include scripts(including a shebang to allow running under any executable). Four such scripts exist: Pre-install, post-install, pre-remove, and post-remove. The package(and the control file) must conform to the Debian policy manual. Many aspects of this policy can be automatically checked using a tool called Lintian.

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