How to install Debian packages on Vyatta

Vyatta is a software-based router OS, built on Debian-based Linux distribution. As such, you can install many standard Debian software packages on a Vyatta-powered router. For example, I wanted to install dhcpdump on my Vyatta router to monitor DHCP traffic.

In order to install a Debian package on Vyatta, first check the version of Vyatta that you are running.

$ show version
Version:      VC6.4-2012.05.31
Description:  Vyatta Core 6.4 2012.05.31

For Vyatta with version 6.0 or above, you should use Debian Squeeze (6.0) repositories to install packages from. The rest of the guide assumes that your Vyatta has version 6.0 and higher.

To set up Debian Squeeze repository on Vyatta:

$ configure
$ set system package repository squeeze components 'main contrib non-free'
$ set system package repository squeeze distribution 'squeeze'
$ set system package repository squeeze url ''
$ commit
$ save
$ exit

Optionally, if your Vyatta router is connected behind an http proxy, you need to configure proxy setting on Vyatta in order to be able to install packages via the proxy. To do that:

$ sudo vi /etc/apt/apt.conf
Acquire::http::proxy "";
Acquire::https::proxy "";

Now you can use apt-get command to install Debian packages on Vyatta.

$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get install dhcpdump

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Dan Nanni is the founder and also a regular contributor of He is a Linux/FOSS enthusiast who loves to get his hands dirty with his Linux box. He likes to procrastinate when he is supposed to be busy and productive. When he is otherwise free, he likes to watch movies and shop for the coolest gadgets.

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