Speed up your Ubuntu updates with apt-fast

Published in: HowTo, Quick Tips

As far as package manager goes apt-get is perhaps the most popular and well-liked package managers out there. One of the reasons Debian and Debian based distributions are so popular is because how ridiculous convenient the package management is. Having said that speed probably not one of the bright spots of apt-get. It’s mostly because apt-get doesn’t support concurrent downloads or resuming partially completed downloads. So if you are stuck making large updates during one of your slow internet days or get disconnected, you will have to restart your updates. This happened to me quite a few times in the past. Packages like LibreOffice, Java, and gitlab has pretty large downloads, even when making simple updates from previous versions.

I have saved countless hours by using apt-fast, which is basically a shellscript wrapper for apt-get, that speeds up updates by downloading multiple packages in parallel using aria2c in background.

Installation is as simple as:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:saiarcot895/myppa
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get -y install apt-fast 

It works exactly the same way as apt-get, just replace get with fast. ie, sudo apt-fast install PACKAGE-NAME, sudo apt-fast upgrade, sudo apt-fast build-dep PACKAGE-NAME. I just use my tried and tested process during regular updates: sudo apt-fast update && sudo apt-get upgrade. The commands might be similar but output is quite a bit different and you can actually see aria2c in action by doing parallel downloads. Here is a demo:

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