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How To Speed Up Downloading Of Packages In Ubuntu

By sk
Published: Updated: 1.6K views

We all know that we can install, update, upgrade and remove packages using apt or aptitude package managers in Debian, Ubuntu, Linux Mint and Pop!_OS etc. These package managers pulls the packages along with all required dependencies from the online repositories and install them on our system. In addition, we can speed up downloading of packages in our Ubuntu system using a simple, yet powerful utility called apt-fast.

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What Is Apt-fast?

Apt-fast is a shell script wrapper for apt and aptitude package managers. It dramatically increases the download speed by downloading the packages in parallel, with multiple connections per package.

Apt-fast tool is quite useful to get things done faster than traditional apt-get command. In this brief tutorial, we will see how to speed up the package download process using apt-fast.

Install Apt-fast In Ubuntu

We can install apt-fast utility using the following one-liner command in any DEB-based system:

$ /bin/bash -c "$(curl -sL https://git.io/vokNn)"

Also, install aria2 command line downloader:

$ sudo apt-get install aria2

Alternatively, you can use the following PPA to install Apt-fast.

$ sudo add-apt-repository ppa:apt-fast/stable
$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get -y install apt-fast

Some DEB based distributions like PCLinuxOS includes apt-fast in its official repositories. So, you don't need to add the above PPA in that systems. Simply run the following command to install apt-fast:

$ sudo apt-get install apt-fast

Configure apt-fast

After installing apt-fast, we need to add some additional mirrors in "apt-fast.conf" file.

Edit apt-fast.conf file:

$ sudo nano /etc/apt-fast.conf

Add the following lines depending upon the distribution you use.

On Ubuntu and derivatives, add:

MIRRORS=( 'http://archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu, http://de.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu, http://ftp.halifax.rwth-aachen.de/ubuntu, http://ftp.uni-kl.de/pub/linux/ubuntu, http://mirror.informatik.uni-mannheim.de/pub/linux/distributions/ubuntu/' )

On Debian, add this:

MIRRORS=( 'http://ftp.debian.org/debian, http://ftp2.de.debian.org/debian, http://ftp.de.debian.org/debian, ftp://ftp.uni-kl.de/debian' )

Save and close the file.

Please note that If you have any mirrors in your sources.list or sources.list.d, you will need to add them to the apt-fast.conf mirror list.

Speed Up Downloading Of Packages Using Apt-fast

Once you installed and configured apt-fast in your system, simply use it as the way you use apt or aptitude commands.

For example, to install Apache web server, run:

$ sudo apt-fast update
$ sudo apt-fast install apache2

Sample outputs:

Speed Up Downloading Of Packages Using Apt-fast
Speed Up Downloading Of Packages Using Apt-fast
Speed Up Downloading Of Packages Using Apt-fast In Ubuntu
Speed Up Downloading Of Packages Using Apt-fast In Ubuntu

As you see in the above outputs, the apt-fast is downloading apache2 package in parallel, with multiple connections.

To update your system, you can run:

$ sudo apt-fast upgrade
$ sudo apt-fast dist-upgrade


In this brief tutorial, we discussed how to speed up package download using Apt-fast in Ubuntu and its derivatives. if you experience a slow download speed while installing packages, give Apt-fast a try. You will see definitely see an improvement.

Hope this tool will be useful to you. Have you tried this tool already? Great, Let us know your thoughts about this utility in the comment section below.


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