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I remember when I used fedora, I could list all packages that I hadn't used for a while with a command like this:

# rpmorphan --all --access-time 10

where 10 is ten days. is there any apt command or snippet that can do this? I've looked over three pages of google results and found nothing

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  • I've used apt for over a decade, and never seen any function of apt that tracks usage. – user535733 May 14 '19 at 20:50
  • According to rpmorphan.sourceforge.net, rpmorphan "intends to be clone of deborphan Debian tools for rpm packages" - however I don't see any mention of access time in the deborphan man page – steeldriver May 15 '19 at 1:32
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There is deborphan, however it does not support anything similar to --access-time.

However there is also popularity-contest.

The popularity-contest command gathers information about Debian packages installed on the system, and prints the name of the most recently used executable program in that package as well as its last-accessed time (atime) and last-attribute-changed time (ctime) to stdout.

This is an opt-out by default option in Ubuntu, inherited from Debian, as it sends data on what packages you use to Debian servers with /usr/share/popularity-contest/popcon-upload.

You can read about it here: https://popcon.debian.org/README

Anyway you can use it to achieve your goal. The idea is described here:

https://unix.stackexchange.com/questions/483900/how-to-find-unused-packages-in-debian

However if you don't want your packages stats to be sent to Debian (accidentally or not), you should better make some steps to prevent it.

I.e. you can block popcon.debian.org in /etc/hosts.

First edit /etc/hosts with:

sudo editor /etc/hosts

and add this line into it:

127.0.0.1 popcon.debian.org

Also you can replace /usr/share/popularity-contest/popcon-upload with some dummy script.

First wipe it with:

echo -n ""  | sudo tee /usr/share/popularity-contest/popcon-upload

Then edit:

sudo editor /usr/share/popularity-contest/popcon-upload

And save it with something like this:

#!/bin/bash

exit 0

Keep in mind that these changes won't be permanent and the mentioned file might get replaces with future upgrades.

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