For Linux Mint 18.3 MATE 32-bit.

I thought that the GUI Synaptic Package Manager and the apt-get command line were working with the same databases of available packages. But this doesn't always seem to the case(?)

Several times I've tried using Synaptic to locate and install one or another package. But Synaptic won't list the package, even after clicking Refresh to reload its list of available software.

When that happens I try using sudo apt-get install [packagename]. More than once apt-get immediately located the "missing" (from Synaptic) package and installed it straightaway.

Is there anything I should be doing to more effectively synchronize Synaptic? Or...?


As requested in the comments, I'm updating my question with a screenshot that illustrates the problem.

Synaptic doesn't list package that Apt immediately installs

  1. I started Synaptic, clicked Refresh, then type kwrite into the Search text entry area. Synaptic didn't find kwrite.

  2. I then proceeded directly to a terminal where I was able to use apt install to locate and install kwrite.

This happens surprisingly often. Wish I could figure out why...

  • Is Synaptic configured on your host to only look at a certain subset of installed repositories?
    – DopeGhoti
    Commented Jan 18, 2018 at 22:21
  • How do you search in Synaptic? Add a detailed step-through, or at least provide a screenshot, including examples of package names that don't work. Background: I guess you've the wrong section active, or using the wrong search method.
    – Murphy
    Commented Jan 19, 2018 at 13:07
  • The next time this happens I'll take a screenshot, et cetera. In Synaptic I typically select ALL sections (as in installed and not installed). And when I search I find other packages that contain the search string -- so I'm pretty sure if Synaptic "knew about" the package it would list it. Anyhow, to be continued...
    – RBV
    Commented Jan 19, 2018 at 23:01

1 Answer 1


It sounds like the repos in synaptic do not match what is in /etc/apt/sources.list (or /etc/apt/sources.list.d/*). I don't use synaptic so I can't tell you where to check.

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