I've just installed Ubuntu 18.04 and selected "minimal install". I then tried to run ifconfig in the terminal and got the following message

-bash: ifconfig: command not found

How come the net-tools package is not installed by default any more?

  • @dessert True. Maybe you can tell me if the fc-cache command is a defualt package or not?
    – JiiB
    Commented May 3, 2018 at 17:14
  • @JiiB On a box without a GUI? No, probably not. And a minimal install would be without X.
    – vidarlo
    Commented May 3, 2018 at 17:16
  • 1
    I edited your question to address solely ifconfig because it would be considered too broad and possibly primarily opinion-based as it was. If you're asking about other specific commands/packages as well, please ask a new question for them.
    – dessert
    Commented May 3, 2018 at 17:46
  • 2
    You might be interested in how to find a package name by the command name and How do I list the default installed packages?.
    – dessert
    Commented May 3, 2018 at 17:52
  • apt install -y net-tools
    – bronze man
    Commented Sep 17, 2021 at 9:12

3 Answers 3


ifconfig is deprecated, and has been so for quite a number of years. The new kid in town is the ip command, which can configure IP's, routes, and everything associated with networks.

You can install ifconfig with sudo apt install net-tools, if you absolutely need to have it. If not, start learning ip.

In short, it is removed because you should not use it. It has mediocre IPv6 support, the ip command is a better replacement. I find sources saying ifconfig was deprecated back in 2012, so I'm not surprised it's finally removed.

You may be able to install it on 18.04, but on future releases it may disappear entirely. I would consider it not being installed by default as a warning shot: learn ip.

Thus ifconfig is probably in a special class. In previous versions of Ubuntu it was included in minimal installs. It is now being phased out, and you explicitly have to install it. This can not be taken to indicate that any other packages are missing.

  • 19
    To further clarify, the command ip is included in the minimal installation of Ubuntu 18.04, no need to install anything additional.
    – 64pi0r
    Commented May 3, 2018 at 17:37
  • 4
    You may find ifconfig installed, if you install one of the various packages which still haven't been updated to use ip, or if you upgraded from an older release of Ubuntu. But you should be aware that ifconfig may not be present on modern systems, and should not rely on it. And actually ifconfig was deprecated in 2009. Commented May 4, 2018 at 4:03
  • 57
    Use ip -c a to highlight the IP addresses with colors.
    – jingyu9575
    Commented May 4, 2018 at 14:16
  • 5
    @jingyu9575 you changed my life Commented May 4, 2018 at 15:36
  • 10
    Minimalist Docker installs may not have ip installed, do apt install -y iproute2 in those cases. Commented Oct 28, 2019 at 19:51

as addition to @vidarlo answer, you can put alias ifconfig='ip -c a' to .bash_aliases if you have typing habit.


This makes the copying of IP addies simpler:

alias ifconfig="ip -c a | sed -e 's/\// \//g'"

(otherwise that subnet slash prevents doubleclick->select of only the IP)

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