deb-control - Linux


deb-control is a command-line tool used to read and modify the control information stored in the Debian package control file (control) of a Debian package. It provides an interactive environment for editing and managing these files.


deb-control [options] [control-file]

The control-field specifies the control field to work on, e.g., Description.


  • -n : Do not save any changes, only print the modified file.
  • -s : Start in a shell instead of editing.
  • -h / –help : Display help information.
  • –version : Display version information.


Editing a Description field:

deb-control -n Description

Printing modified control file:

deb-control -n

Common Issues

  • Missing control file: Ensure that the control file is present in the current working directory.
  • Permission denied: Verify that you have write access to the control file.


  • Use deb-control with dpkg-deb to extract control data from a package:
dpkg-deb -f package.deb | deb-control
  • Combine with grep to search for specific fields:
deb-control | grep Maintainer

Related Commands

  • dpkg-deb : Manipulates Debian packages.
  • dpkg-query : Provides information about installed packages.