abicompat - Linux


abicompat analyzes binary packages to determine compatibility with other versions of the same package or other packages that depend on it. It plays a vital role in maintaining backward and forward compatibility during package upgrades and dependency resolutions.


abicompat [options...] <package-or-library-1> <package-or-library-2>


  • -a or --all: Report all compatibility and version information.
  • -g or --git: Determine compatibility between two different versions of a package from a Git repository.
  • -h or --help: Show help and usage information.
  • -l or --latest: Compare the given package or library with the latest version available in the same repository.
  • --symbol-list <file>: Generate a list of symbols from a package or library and write it to the specified file.
  • --version-list <file>: Generate a list of versions from a package or library and write it to the specified file.
  • -v or --verbose: Provide verbose output with additional details.


Example 1: Check compatibility between two versions of a package:

abicompat package-version1 package-version2

Example 2: Compare a package with the latest version available in Git:

abicompat -l package-or-library

Common Issues

  • Package name mismatch: Ensure that you have provided the correct package names or paths.
  • Missing symbols: If abicompat reports missing symbols, check that the package was built with debug symbols enabled.
  • Version incompatibility: Incompatible versions of packages can cause issues. Consider using abicompat to verify compatibility before upgrading or installing new versions.


abicompat can be integrated with other tools for advanced tasks:

  • Package manager hooks: Integrate with package managers like apt or yum to automatically check compatibility before installing or upgrading packages.
  • Build scripts: Use abicompat in build scripts to ensure binary compatibility with existing systems or dependencies.
  • Continuous integration (CI): Incorporate abicompat into CI pipelines to verify compatibility with each build.

Related Commands

  • dpkg-query: Query package information in Debian-based systems.
  • rpm -q: Query package information in Red Hat-based systems.
  • objdump -T: View symbol information in binary files.