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It seems a simple apt-get remove apache2 does not completely remove apache2 as I can still see it on one of the processes when running top. How does one remove apache2 completely on his ubuntu server?

It's not removed indeed:

~# which apache2
/usr/sbin/apache2
~# whereis apache2
apache2: /usr/sbin/apache2 /etc/apache2 /usr/lib/apache2 /usr/share/apache2 /usr/share/man/man8/apache2.8.gz

But when I do apt-get remove apache2 again:

# apt-get remove apache2
Reading package lists... Done
Building dependency tree
Reading state information... Done
Package apache2 is not installed, so not removed
0 upgraded, 0 newly installed, 0 to remove and 0 not upgraded.
  • 4
    run apt-get purge apache2. It will remove the all config files. – Manula Waidyanatha Aug 17 '12 at 10:06
  • I followed this with apt-get autoremove and then sudo rm -rf /etc/apache2 – Matthew Hegarty Sep 4 '19 at 12:44
161

apache2 is a metapackage that just selects other packages. If you installed apache by installing that package, you just need to run this to clean up the automatically selected packages:

sudo apt autoremove

If that doesn't work, you might have installed one of the dependents manually. You can target all the apache2- packages from space and nuke the lot:

sudo apt remove apache2.*

For future reference, to find out which package a binary is from, you can run this:

dpkg -S `which apache2`

I'd expect that to come back with apache2.2-bin (at the time of writing).

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  • 9
    also, use --purge if you want the configuration files to be deleted as well: apt-get --purge remove apache2 – xyious Aug 17 '12 at 10:03
  • 1
    The last command outputs apache2-mpm-prefork: /usr/sbin/apache2 – Jürgen Paul Aug 17 '12 at 10:03
  • 1
    @Severus fair enough -- I was just guessing but that makes sense. Yeah I'd just use the wildcard but keen an eye on what it's going to delete. apache2-common is used by some tools that aren't the apache2 httpd so you might need to reinstall some thing after. – Oli Aug 17 '12 at 10:06
  • @Oli Removing things with a regex 'apache2*' is dangerous, loads of things end up getting removed – jhbsk Dec 8 '13 at 7:57
  • 1
    @jasdeepkhalsa It's not "dangerous". apt-get (unlike apt-cache) limits its searches to names-only so it's not that far-reaching. Everything it captures is Apache or Apache dependent. Check it yourself with apt-get -s remove apache2* – Oli Dec 9 '13 at 8:53
83

Follow these steps to remove the apache2 service using Terminal:

  1. First stop the apache2 service if it is running with: sudo service apache2 stop
  2. Now remove and cleanup all the apache2 packages with:

    sudo apt-get purge apache2 apache2-utils apache2.2-bin apache2-common
    //or 
    sudo apt-get purge apache2 apache2-utils apache2-bin apache2.2-common
    
  3. Finally, run sudo apt-get autoremove just in case any other cleanup in needed

You can do the following two tests to confirm apache has been removed:

  1. which apache2 - should return a blank line
  2. sudo service apache2 start - should return apache2: unrecognized service
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  • 4
    sudo apt-get purge apache2 apache2-utils apache2-bin apache2.2-common – Fzs2 Nov 7 '17 at 13:49
  • works perfect for me – Nechtan Sep 7 '19 at 18:03
  • 1
    When I run which apache2 it reports /usr/sbin/apache2. Should that someone be deleted before reinstalling? – DonP Jan 11 at 20:18
55

A very simple and straightforward way that worked for me is as follows:

  1. Stop apache2.

    sudo service apache2 stop
    
  2. Uninstall Apache2 and its dependent packages.

    sudo apt-get purge apache2 apache2-utils apache2.2-bin apache2-common
    
  3. Use autoremove option to get rid of other dependencies.

    sudo apt-get autoremove
    
  4. Check whether there are any configuration files that have not been removed.

    whereis apache2
    
  5. If you get a response as follows apache2: /etc/apache2 remove the directory and existing configuration files.

    sudo rm -rf /etc/apache2  
    

Source: How to uninstall and remove Apache2 on Ubuntu or Debian by Dan Nanni

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  • 2
    For me it was: sudo apt-get purge apache2 apache2-utils apache2-bin apache2.2-common – Fzs2 Nov 7 '17 at 13:48
3

First check if you are using right package name, IMO correct package name is : apache2.x-common

If you want to completely remove the package including config files then try:

    dpkg --purge apache2.2-common
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2

Take time to check if you are using the different package apache2.2-bin for Ubuntu 16.04 the latest is apache2.4-bin

sudo apt-get purge apache2 apache2-utils apache2.4-bin apache2.4-common

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