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This cookbook includes recipes to execute apt-get update to ensure the local APT package cache is up to date. There are recipes for managing the apt-cacher-ng caching proxy and proxy clients. It also includes a LWRP for managing APT repositories in /etc/apt/sources.list.d.



This recipe installs the update-notifier-common package to provide the timestamp file used to only run apt-get update if the cache is less than one day old.

This recipe should appear first in the run list of Debian or Ubuntu nodes to ensure that the package cache is up to date before managing any package resources with Chef.

This recipe also sets up a local cache directory for preseeding packages.


Installs the apt-cacher-ng package and service so the system can provide APT caching. You can check the usage report at http://{hostname}:3142/acng-report.html. The cacher-ng recipe includes the cacher-client recipe, so it helps seed itself.


Configures the node to use the apt-cacher-ng server as a client.


This LWRP provides an easy way to manage additional APT repositories. Adding a new repository will notify running the execute[apt-get-update] resource.


  • :add: creates a repository file and builds the repository listing
  • :remove: removes the repository file

Attribute Parameters

  • repo_name: name attribute. The name of the channel to discover
  • uri: the base of the Debian distribution
  • distribution: this is usually your release's codename...ie something like karmic, lucid or maverick
  • components: package groupings..when it doubt use main
  • deb_src: whether or not to add the repository as a source repo as well
  • key_server: the GPG keyserver where the key for the repo should be retrieved
  • key: if a key_server is provided, this is assumed to be the fingerprint, otherwise it is the URI to the GPG key for the repo


# add the Zenoss repo
apt_repository "zenoss" do
  uri "http://dev.zenoss.org/deb"
  components ["main","stable"]

# add the Nginx PPA; grab key from keyserver
apt_repository "nginx-php" do
  uri "http://ppa.launchpad.net/nginx/php5/ubuntu"
  distribution node['lsb']['codename']
  components ["main"]
  keyserver "keyserver.ubuntu.com"
  key "C300EE8C"

# add the Cloudkick Repo
apt_repository "cloudkick" do
  uri "http://packages.cloudkick.com/ubuntu"
  distribution node['lsb']['codename']
  components ["main"]
  key "http://packages.cloudkick.com/cloudkick.packages.key"

# remove Zenoss repo
apt_repository "zenoss" do
  action :remove


Put recipe[apt] first in the run list. If you have other recipes that you want to use to configure how apt behaves, like new sources, notify the execute resource to run, e.g.:

template "/etc/apt/sources.list.d/my_apt_sources.list" do
  notifies :run, resources(:execute => "apt-get update"), :immediately

The above will run during execution phase since it is a normal template resource, and should appear before other package resources that need the sources in the template.

Put recipe[apt::cacher-ng] in the run_list for a server to provide APT caching and add recipe[apt::cacher-client] on the rest of the Debian-based nodes to take advantage of the caching server.



  • [COOK-1040] - actually run apt-get update w/ not_if


  • [COOK-533] - add support for deb and deb_src repos with apt_repository provider
  • [COOK-593] - switched from apt-cacher to apt-cacher-ng to better support multiple distributions.
  • [COOK-890] - Fix distribution for zenoss repo in apt README
  • [COOK-891] - Make add the default action for apt_repository
  • [COOK-947] - Add chef-solo support for recipe[apt::cacher-client].


  • [COOK-804] - apt-get update resource in apt cookbook changed names


  • [COOK-136] - Limit apt-get update to one run per day unless notified.
  • [COOK-471] - ignore failure on apt-get update
  • [COOK-533] - add support for deb and deb_src repos with apt_repository

License and Author

Author:: Joshua Timberman (joshua@opscode.com) Author:: Matt Ray (matt@opscode.com) Author:: Seth Chisamore (schisamo@opscode.com)

Copyright 2009-2012 Opscode, Inc.

Licensed under the Apache License, Version 2.0 (the "License"); you may not use this file except in compliance with the License. You may obtain a copy of the License at


Unless required by applicable law or agreed to in writing, software distributed under the License is distributed on an "AS IS" BASIS, WITHOUT WARRANTIES OR CONDITIONS OF ANY KIND, either express or implied. See the License for the specific language governing permissions and limitations under the License.